Review: Jack and the Beanstalk at Sheringham Little Theatre

Not only has Santa and his little elves been busy this festive season but co-directors, West End star Killian Donnelly and Damien Douglas, have also been working their magic at this year's Sheringham Little Theatre panto.

Bringing to life the age old tale of Jack and the Beanstalk was no easy feat for a theatre of this size but the cast brought the production into the 21st century with a bag full of magic beans and corny gags.

This production incorporates all the elements of a traditional panto - family fun with enough charm to bring a smile to even the biggest of Scrooges.

The charismatic cast hit the stage firing on all cylinders to deliver a first-rate show which had the audience cheering, singing and belly-laughing.

And not only was the performance spectacular with amazing vocals and modern, quirky song choices but the ambitious costumes, set and effects were executed with exceptional quality.

From the start the audience were involved, blushing at Molly Coddle's (Russel Hicken) innuendos, falling in love with Jack (Jonathan Broderick) and Jill (Rachel Waring), and booing and hissing at vampire-esque villain Snotmill (Benedict Martin).

And while this Jack and the Beanstalk deviates from its original story, the core of the tale remains - charming Jack falls in love with the beautiful and soulful-voiced Jill, eventually climbing up the beanstalk to rescue the village from a giant and save the day.

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Jack's over-the-top mother Molly almost steals the show with not only a cheeky performance but also a number of fantastic costume changes. And no panto would be complete without a panto cow - MooTube - who performs a surprisingly agile dance number.

But the real star of the show without a doubt is the evil Snotmill's loveable sidekick Rolph (James Lavender), with his humorous German accent and lederhosen-clad character.

Overall a golden egg is well and truly laid with this panto performance and is well worth a visit.

? Jack and the Beanstalk runs at Sheringham Little Theatre from December 8 until January 5. For more information or tickets ring 01263 822347 or visit www.sheringhamlittletheatre.com.

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