Little Red Riding Hood

Atlantis Arena, Yarmouth

For me, as for many children, the pantomime is a favourite feature of the festive season and this rather special Little Red Riding Hood certainly captured the imagination of the appreciative audience.

Additions to this version of Red Riding Hood were the hero, Robin Hood, who was played by Emma Clare, and Will Scarlett, played by Gavin Dean, who both became firm favourites with the children. Another member of the cast was Old King Cole, although not merry but disconsolate!

Dandy the Lion and other animals also played a part, to the children's delight.

However, the towering figure of this production was Dame Grannie Annie, played by Steve Ace, the writer and director of the pantomime, who was seldom off the stage.

From curtain-up when the wolf introduced himself in clever rhyming couplets, the stage was set for the action to follow . . .

Music and song were naturally a prominent feature and there were many opportunities for audience participation.

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A ghost also featured which caused great excitement.

The scene when Dame Grannie Annie bought a newspaper, only to dispose of it later in a post box, was very amusing.

After the interval, Little Red Riding Hood, played by Jackie Kelly-Doddington, took a short cut through the woods to Grannie Annie's cottage.

Alas, the wolf beat her to it and devoured her grandmother.

The enactment of the Grannie-ectomy, the surgical removal of Dame Grannie-Annie from the wolf's abdomen, to the discomfiture of Will Scarlett, was quite riveting.

The hero of the hour was Robin Hood, who rushed in and, to everyone's relief, saved Red Riding Hood from the wicked wolf.

All ended happily with a grand finale of sleigh bells.

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