Rentaghost: The Musical

CAROLINE CULOT Norwich Theatre Royal

CAROLINE CULOT

Norwich Theatre Royal

Memories of watching TV after school were no doubt rekindled for many thirty and forty-somethings watching this new show based on the children's series of the same name.

The TV series, about an agency of mischievous ghosts who don't actually want to frighten people, ran from 1976-84 and has been resurrected by comedian Joe Pasquale, who wrote the show.

It's a vibrant, energetic production and if there's a nightmare to be had, it's probably for the actors who have to cope with pulling off a variety of magic tricks and stunts, which on Saturday did not always go to plan. But with a bit of panto style ad-lib, no one cared.

Keeping on the panto theme, there is a villain - in the form of a newspaper editor, which must be Pasquale having a dig, but Richard Alan made great fun out of playing the conniving Randolph Upchurch who will do anything for a scoop - no typecasting there!

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However, this show greatly lacked pace. Scenes needed to be a lot punchier and speedier.

The penultimate scene involving romance between two of the characters was also unnecessary.

And unfortunately the whole show had a bit of a low budget feel - probably because it was.

The problem is that today's audiences are used to such a high standard with the amount of West End touring shows so it's difficult for smaller productions like this one to really shine. Pasquale hit on a great idea but in its current form, Rentaghost the Musical could well die a death soon.

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