Hercules, Norwich

IAN CLARKE David Lambert summed up the scale of the task beautifully at half-time when he said it was like “organising D-Day landings.”

IAN CLARKE

David Lambert summed up the scale of the task beautifully at half-time when he said it was like “organising D-Day landings.”

Getting a cast of 180 youngsters from around Norfolk aged eight-21 – many with little or no stage experience – ready to put on a two-and-a-half hour musical production of the adventures of Greek demi-god Hercules is little short of remarkable.

But then Mr Lambert, who wrote and directed the show, and his colleagues have built up a great reputation for what they achieve at the Theatre Royal Arts Courses.

Hercules is far from the easiest story to put across in a fun and accessible, yet powerful way to an audience of all ages.

However, the genius of the creators and the energy and massive talent of the performers made sure it worked magnificently.

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The story ends with Hercules as the proven hero – but the real heroes at last night's opening show were every single member of the cast and those behind the scenes for a really excellent evening.

Hades' demons Timeus (Nicholas Potts) and Toxis (Sam Claffin) plus Hades (Gareth Hinsley) will surely go all the way if they pursue acting careers – and many other budding stars were on show.

The opening night audience was large and enthusiastic and the performers deserve repeats for the rest of the week.

Unless you've got something planned you can't call off I would get along to the Theatre Royal – you won't be disappointed.

t Hercules continues until Saturday August 3. Box office: 01603 630000. It is suitable for age six upwards.

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