After several successful years of rock’n’roll pantomimes at the Gatehouse, new production company Prime Pantomimes rings the changes with a return to traditional pantomime.
This high-energy production of Peter Pan gets off to a flying start. There’s a strong opening sequence in the Darling family home, with the children pillow fighting to the strains of Madness’ Our House.
Corey Jones makes an excellent Peter Pan. Not only does he look the part, but he has a great singing voice, too.
Richard Evans’ clever set design makes the stage look bigger than it actually is and there are some lovely touches, including a crocodile that runs around in the audience, Peter’s desperate struggle to find and re-attach his shadow and Charlotte Fishwick’s rendition of the Guns and Roses song Sweet Child O’ Mine.
However, despite a huge amount of energetic effort by James Dangerfield as Smee and a valiant attempt by last-minute stand-in Jolyon Dixon as Mrs Starkey, the show as a whole doesn’t really connect and Ian Reddington’s Captain Hook lacks menace. That said, it’s a pleasing return to traditional pantomime in Stafford.