REVIEW: Cromer Pier Show 2016 - What a sparkler

Red Hot Latin Fever routine from Cromer's 2016 Pier Show. Picture: AL PULFORD

Red Hot Latin Fever routine from Cromer's 2016 Pier Show. Picture: AL PULFORD - Credit: Archant

Cromer Pier Show

Cromer Pier Pavilion Theatre

If Cromer's the gem of the Norfolk coast, its end-of-the-pier show is a major reason for that diamond ranking.

This year's summer offering is a multifaceted sparkler, held together by relaxed funny man Phil Butler.

Like many of the performers, compere Phil has more than one string to his (dickie) bow.

Magic, mime, ventriloquism, and an unusual, absorbing artistic act involving torchlight and photo-luminescent fabric are all added value for money above and beyond the gags.

Australian comedy juggler James Bustar lived up to the last syllable of his surname – he went down a storm.

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What this Wizard of Oz can do with axes, a tennis racquet and a very bendy body doesn't bear thinking about – up over, round the sides and definitely Down Under.

Singers Rob McVeigh and Emily Yarrow were well contrasted. Rob a powerful crooner and classically-trained Emily with a voice at its best in popular operatic numbers.

Home-grown impressionist Marea Smithson – by day an N&N secretary, by night just about everyone from the Ann(e)s Widdecombe and Robinson, to Blakey from On the Buses - captured voices and mannerisms very convincingly.

The pier show's backbone is always its dance troupe and this year's crew - supported in a Sound of Music set by lively, routine-perfect girls from Marlene's School of Dancing - belted energy and talent with every jump and kick.

Choreographer/director and show deviser Di Cooke is a particularly precious gem in Cromer's 'Di'adem.

Production values were high throughout, and costumes ever-changing and gorgeous.

Folks, this is the last end-of-the-pier show in Europe and it's on your doorsteps.

Don't risk the future of one of Norfolk's crown jewels – make sure you support it.

The show continues until September 24. Tickets: box office on 01263 51249 or visit www.cromerpier.co.uk

Alex Hurrell

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