Last night I attended the premiere with Hexham’s mayor and was surrounded by troops of local Scouts and Beavers who were chuckling away and fully involved throughout. Audience participation was very much key and the show itself is beautiful put together by the direction of Damien Cruden and the intelligent script by Nick Lane, with two lead actors who inhabit all the roles with a joyful ease that must take the credit for the show’s success.
I’m not sure how they both have the energy to run between here and Alnwick Playhouse (which shares the play with Queen’s Hall, Hexham) for the full festive season, and still put everything into the show itself – voices, costumes, jokes, singing, but they pull it off with aplomb. Jokes abound for adults and children alike – so many you can almost miss them if you’re not concentrating, and some of the plot devices – the mirror, the ‘balloon’ cast, and the glittery chicken are still making me smile today.
Fabulous family show
All-in-all this is a fabulous family show and I advise you book quickly for the dates you want over the Christmas season. The Queen’s Hall is always brave and progressive with its programming, and after replacing the more traditional panto over the last few years with more regional, modern plays their offerings are a refreshing riff on the usual festive fayre. I hardly recommend you take your family to see this over Christmas. The ticket prices are much more reasonably priced than the usual urban offerings.
“If you want your children to be intelligent, read them fairy tales. If you want them to be more intelligent, read them more fairy tales.” – Albert Einstein
Tickets – from £12. Running Time – 1hr 45 mins (inc. interval). Ages – 4+
For more information or to book tickets visit www.queenshall.co.uk or call the box office on 01434 652 477.