Our review: Aladdin A Magical Performance
By Esmee Hall
Pantomime season is now in full swing across the country , this year the Marina Theatre in Lowestoft is home to Aladdin starring Mark Read, Ann Widdecombe and resident funny man Terry Gleed
I was lucky enough to be invited to meet and interview the cast at their press launch so I was very much looking forward to taking my children to see Aladdin as it is one of our favourite fairy tales.
As soon as we entered the Theatre you could sense the excitement in the audience and they really weren’t going to be left disappointed.
The story is set in Old Peking in China, where Aladdin dreams of marrying the lovely Princess Jasmine ( Mia Richards) and providing a better life for his mother, Widow Twanky, and brother, Wishee Washee.
With the promise of enough money to make him as rich as a prince, the wicked magician Abanazar has tricked Aladdin into helping him find a magic lamp hidden in a secret cave high in the hills. Aladdin soon finds himself trapped in the cave with only a battered old lamp for company. It’s only when he rubs the lamp that his adventure truly begins.
Will Aladdin escape and ever achieve his dreams of marrying the beautiful Princess Jasmine and achieving great wealth?
The lead role Aladdin is played by British Singer/ Song writer Mark Read, known to millions as a member of hit boyband A1. Mark put on a brilliant performance and kept the audience entertained with his electric stage presence. A highlight was Aladdin’s magical carpet ride to Marks A1 hit ‘Take on Me’.
There was lots of interaction and audience participation with the children throughout the show . The character Aladdin often needed the help of all his friends in the audience so be prepared to boo, hiss, cheer and sing.
The children and even the adults in the audience generated much excitement and laughter with cheering and shouting, including booing the wicked Abanazar ( Darren Clewlow-Smith ) who was well cast as the villain, which he played fantastically.
Much of the humour in the show was based around the characters PC Ping and Pong (Nick Brittain and Thomas Mann) and Wishee Washee (Terry Gleed), the children took great delight in their scenes especially the Benny Hill type chase around the stalls with Wishee Washee hiding in the audience and then a washing machine. My son was also especially enjoyed when Wishee Washee appeared with an enormous water pistol.
Ann Widdecombe had a great stage presence as the “Very Delectable, Stricly Respectable, Empress Chop Suey III” a particular highlight was her Strictly style dance routine.
It was clear that the audience also enjoyed singing along with the songs in the show which were often modern hits such as Taylor Swift to old classics such as ‘Kung Fo Fighting’ that the whole family could recognise and join in with.
I was really impressed with the amount of attention to detail that had been put into the set and costume design. Widow Twankey (Fenton Gray) had a vast array of elaborate costumes, her Laundry costume being my sons favourite.
The show was also complimented by some exceptional dancing from the whole team who had flawless routines.
An all-round brilliant family pantomime, a show complete with flying carpet, dazzling costumes and laughs a plenty.
I would definitely recommend to families with children 3+ years old. My 7 year old son enjoyed himself so much that we are going to return to see the show again this time with his 4 year old brother.
So if you are looking for entertainment for the whole family this Christmas then look no further than Aladdin at the Marina.
For Sale: Programmes were for sale at £3 and there was a range of flashing lights for sale. Also for sale was a cd of Mark Read and a book by Ann Widdecombe.
Time: The show we saw started at 7pm and finished at 9.30pm with an Interval.
Shows: Aladdin runs until 1st January 2018 for the following performances
- Sun 17th 1pm and 5pm
- Mon 18th 10am and 1.30pm
- Wed 20th 2pm and 7pm
- Thurs 21st 1pm and 5pm
- Fri 22nd 2pm and 7pm
- Sat 23rd 1pm and 5pm includes a visit from Father Christmas
- Sun 24th 1pm and 5pm includes a visit from Father Christmas
- Tues 26th 3pm
- Wed 27th 1pm and 5pm
- Thurs 28th 2pm and 7pm (signed performance)
- Fri 29th 2pm and 7pm
- Sat 30th 1pm and 5pm
- Sun 31st 1pm and 5pm
- Mon 1st 3pm
To book tickets to this magical pantomime visit the Marina Theatre’s website www.marinatheatre.co.uk or Tel: 01502 533200