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“Innovative and uplifting”

Trish Cooke and Robert Hyman’s adaptation of Rapunzel for Theatre Royal Stratford East may stray wildly from the original story, but that’s par for the course at this venue.

Over the last few years, the pair have regularly put their own, idiosyncratic stamp on the pantomime canon, but Rapunzel is perhaps their best collaboration to date.

Fusing the story together with that of Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Cooke weaves a tale of community and togetherness, tinged with retribution and remorse, fit for modern family audiences.

Director Pooja Ghai evidently revels in testing the boundaries of pantomime as a medium and she is ably assisted by a versatile company who bring to life the vibrant array of colourful characters from Juliet Okotie’s outspoken Mrs Bear to Gary Wood’s fey, feathered Egor. The turbulent relationship between Joanne Sandi as Rapunzel and Julie Yammanee as Goldilocks provides the heart of this pantomime, while conflict is supplied by TRSE regular Michael Bertenshaw as the frankly terrifying Witch Maddy.

There’s no central, conventional love story, but this is a pantomime bursting with love, complemented by an uplifting score from Hyman, and a rich, heavily textured design from William Fricker.

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Production Details
Production nameRapunzel
VenueTheatre Royal Stratford East
StartsNovember 27, 2017
EndsJanuary 13, 2017
Running time2hrs 10mins
ComposerRobert Hyman
Book writerTrish Cooke
LyricistRobert Hyman, Trish Cooke
DirectorPooja Ghai
Set designerWilliam Fricker
Lighting designerMatt Daw
Sound designerAndrew Johnson, Chris Murray
CastGary Wood, Gemma Salter, Joanne Sandi, Julie Yammanee, Juliet Okotie, Michael Bertenshaw, Raj Bajaj, Stephen Hoo
TechnicalRichard Parr
Production managerLuke Child
Stage managerSarah Buik
Head of wardrobeMike Lees
ProducerTheatre Royal Stratford East
VerdictInnovative adaptation featuring an uplifting score, entertaining performances and utterly enchanting design
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Paul Vale

Paul Vale

Paul Vale

Paul Vale

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