A PACKED audience was enthralled by the Harlow Playhouse pantomime production of Peter Pan.
This was a performance and production that managed to fill the whole auditorium from the stage to the highest rafters.
This reporter always likes to hear what their eight-year-old grand-daughter thought of the show and she was clearly enraptured by the stunning visuals.
Her favourite scene is based under the sea, in a mermaids lagoon and was enthralled by the amazing use of high wires. We don’t want to say too much but implore you to go and see it for yourself.
And that is the secret to the success of this performance.
They know that a 2017 audience will want a traditional pantomime but also have the technology that will impress the smartphone generation (and they start young!).
What also enables Daniel Bell’s production to be a success is production values. It feels like a West End show, it looks like a West End show and the audience went away feeling they had seen one right in their home town.
Peter Pan stars Kevin James and Jimmy Burton-Iles, two highly popular regulars at Harlow Playhouse and sometimes you are conscious of overlooking them but they are the glue that keeps the whole show together.
This was especially true of Jimmy who plays Madame Lily, who had the audience (especially the front row) eating out of his hand.
Captain Hook (Kevin James) and Smee ( Ben Parsley) were a great double act.
But this was also a fine ensemble cast with a number of outstanding vocal performances as well. Emilie du Leslay as Wendy and Rob Houchen stand out and you can see why actors such as Rob have had a three year run in shows such as Les Miserables.
And the same applies to the direction of Daniel Bell who has brought the skill he showed directing shows such as Hello Dolly to the Harlow stage.
This is a show where everyone makes a great contribution which means that in the end, the show is the star.
We go back to our favourite eight-year-old reviewer who in describing the show mentioned vivid image after delightful image from skeletons dancing to those mermaids again.
We spoke to one audience member after the show. Katrina Allen said: “I really enjoyed the show and it looked like audience members of all ages also enjoyed it.
“The secret seemed to be that they kept to the original story but added extra special sequences such as the underwater sequence where they had flying mermaids, jellyfish as well as balls going through the audience. Oh and I liked the jokes for
the adults as well! A great show, go see.”
We implore you to go and see this show.
Peter Pan runs until December 31st.
Get your tickets here https://playhouseharlow.ticketsolve.com/shows/873570170?utm_source=Website&utm_medium=Bottom+Website+Carousel+Slider&utm_campaign=Peter+Pan%253A+The+Magical+Pantomime+Adventure%2521
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