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“Thrilling comedy triumph”

Renowned across the Central Belt of Scotland for his especially modern and fresh-thinking pantos, Johnny McKnight is a fixture at Glasgow’s Tron, where he balances a sense of wonder and a contemporary, Scots-accented humour.

His skill ensures the ‘fun for all the family’ tag doesn’t mean the spiky adult edge has been filed away.

This year, the first-rate enthusiasm and jokes of Cinderfella have been bolstered by an edge of contemporary relevance, which ensures this production is a real tour de force in McKnight’s panto repertoire.

The pitch is an all-female production of Cinderella, where our hero (Sally Reid) seeks to gatecrash the WAGish Princess Charmaine’s (Lauren Ellis-Steele) all-male ball, but not for love or aspiration – she wants to ask for help in saving her late parents’ vintage store from being sold by her crowing Wicked Stepmother (also Ellis-Steele). In this traditional framework, all concerned pick up the baton and sprint with it.

McKnight’s script is sharp, reinforcing positive messages about self-sufficiency as a woman while keeping the tone light and self-deprecating – a cameo sequence from a number of disgruntled fairytale princesses is outstanding.

Ross Brown’s musical numbers and Eva Forrester’s choreography ring with contemporary pop charm. Kenny Miller’s crisp direction and vibrant, colourful design – the cartoon wig-helmets made of strands of foam are gorgeous – maintains a sense of freshness throughout.

The performances really make the piece. Ellis-Steele swaggers through her double role and delivers some stunning vocals, while Jo Freer’s baa-ing Muttons is a welcoming narrator.

In their muscle-suited male personas, the ever-versatile Reid – magically transformed into Cinderfella – and Daisy Ann Fletcher and Hannah Jarrett-Scott as laddish stepbros Larry and Harry, provide the most enduring memories of this thrilling comedy triumph.

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Production Details
Production nameCinderfella
VenueTron Theatre
StartsNovember 27, 2019
EndsJanuary 5, 2020
Running time2hrs 20mins
AuthorJohnny Mcknight
ComposerRoss Brown
DirectorKenny Miller
Musical directorRoss Brown
ChoreographerEva Forrester
Set designerKenny Miller
Lighting designerGrant Anderson
CastDaisy Ann Fletcher, Hannah Jarrett-Scott, Jo Freer, Lauren Ellis-Steele, Michelle James, Sally Reid, Hannah Visocchi
Stage managerLaura Walshe, Richard Lyons
ProducerRandom Accomplice, Tron
VerdictThe Tron’s all-female Cinderella reads men and women equally well, amid a riot of song, dance and sharp humour
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David Pollock

David Pollock

David Pollock

David Pollock

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