Review: Peter Pan, Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama

Andy Howells visits the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama in Cardiff to review this years Kinetic School of Performing Arts pantomime, Peter Pan!

Staged in the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama’s Richard Burton Theatre, Kinetic School of Performing Arts presentation of Peter Pan is fun, intimate and absorbing. The set itself is beautifully painted, while strong lighting skills and props add emphasis to each scene.

The pantomime’s strong point is undoubtedly the ensemble casts infectious enthusiasm and professional approach to the performance. This helps draw the audience into the adventure by subsequently carrying us along to Neverland with Peter Pan, Tinkerbell, Wendy, John and Michael.

And what a journey it is! Jacob Addis brilliantly embodies the energy of the boy who never wants to grow up with a fun and accessible portrayal. Sophie Baker is at his side with a sassy, but adorable performance of the lovestruck Tinkerbell.

Joining the Neverland duo are the Darling children, Wendy played by Grace Halbert, John played by Tenya Jones and Michael played by Morgan Evans. All three have recreated the iconic children by maintaining a classic storybook look mixed with a sense of realism, delivering strong performances.

The wonder doesn’t stop there however, when we arrive in Neverland, we meet Peter Pan’s adorable friends The Lost Boys, the delightful Mermaids (all who give powerful interpretations of Black Magic and Wannabe) and several comical pirates. Each group is made up of individuals who possess star quality, ultimately demonstrating how strong teamwork can contribute to the make-up of a successful show. This shines through in each performer’s interpretation of Kris Crowley’s choreography and Liz York & Emma Pawsey’s musical direction.

While Lucy Jo Evans blows the audience away as Tiger Lily (particularly with her spellbinding performance of Trouble), Radio Cardiff’s dynamic duo Wyburn and Wayne lead the mayhem as head pirates Smee and Captain Hook respectively. In real life, this pair bubble over with their infectious passion for the local community and theatre and this carries over as they tread the boards in Peter Pan. Here they encourage much in the way of audience participation through boos and hisses while delivering some fun musical numbers including Smee and My Shadow and I’m Too Sexy.

The panto culminates with a unique, memorable, and fun dance-off showdown between The Lost Boys and The Pirates, before an energetic ensemble performance of Reach.

A fun pantomime for all ages, you’ll be hooked (like the captain himself) by Peter Pan’s ensemble star quality. But be quick! Peter Pan is flying twice daily into the RWCMD until Friday December 23rd. So, book your tickets now!

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