REVIEW: Cinderella ‘Worthing’s most popular panto ever’

SUS-160201-095502001

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Worthing’s traditional pantomime for 2015 has proved to be its most popular ever.

Cinderella is showing at the Pavilion Theatre until Sunday - so if you haven’t seen it yet, you need to be quick to catch it.

I took my daughter Ruby, who has just turned three, to see the show (her first-ever panto) just before Christmas and it really proved a treat for us both.

For the first ten minutes, Ruby sat in absolute silence, her eyes glued to the stage. I kept asking if she was ok but I got no response. In fact, she sat pretty quietly throughout the whole performance, only fidgeting to find better positions to see the stage and to ask lots of questions about the characters and “where is Cinderella” every time there was a scene the leading lady was not part of.

At the interval, Ruby told me she was having a “wonderful time” and it was clear that most of the packed audience felt the same.

The cast was also obviously having a ball with strong performances and confidence in abundance.

Ruby’s favourite characters were Cinderella, played by Cara Dudgeon, and the hated but hilarious ugly sisters, perfectly portrayed by Oliver Gray and Dean Horner, who wear some amazing costumes.

Prince Charming is played by the suitably suave Matt Evers, world champion skater from Dancing on Ice, and talented singer/songwriter Mark Read, from boy band A1, is his trusty assistant Dandini. James Dangerfield is the loveable Buttons.

There is plenty to keep the adults entertained, too, with panto favourites Keith and Ben Simmons providing the usual innuendo and silliness.

Paul Holman’s adaptation of Cinderella may go off on unusual tangents but that is what panto is all about. No ghosts in Cinderella - well there is now! And, with professional dancer Camilla Dallerup playing the Fairy Godmother, it was only right we had some not so subtle references to Strictly Come Dancing. There was even a whole scene when the guests at the Prince’s ball are critiqued by “the judges”!

The soundtrack has also been changed a little - children all over Worthing and beyond will now be associating Cinderella with chart hits such as Uptown Funk, Shut up and Dance and One Night Only.

Worthing’s traditional panto was moved to the bigger capacity Pavilion Theatre for 2015 and it has proved a wise decision. Before Christmas, Cinderella had sold almost 28,000 tickets, bringing in £375,124 and breaking the all-time sales record for any pantomime in the Worthing Theatres’ history.

There are still tickets available for this weekend (January 2 and 3).

To book, call 01903 206 206 or visit www.worthingtheatres.co.uk

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