Rachel Howells reviews the pantomime Mother Goose at Wales Millennium Centre.
The long awaited pantomime, Mother Goose has opened in the Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff. We started off with the news that John Bishop would not be attending due to compassionate leave, therefore the show opened with his understudy Gabriel Fleary.
The pantomime is written by Jonathan Harvey (Coronation Street, Gimme Gimme Gimme) and directed by award-winning director Cal McCrystal and features Sir Ian McKellen in the lead role of Mother Goose who is married to Vic played by Gabriel Fleary.
During the show we follow the couple who run an animal sanctuary in an old Debenhams store taking in waifs and strays as they find them. When a goose flies in, they soon discover that she lays golden eggs and is a route to taking away all their financial worries. But will fame and fortune get the better of them?
While Sir Ian Mckellen and Gabriel Fleary worked together well, Oscar Conlon-Murray’s performance of Jack was the highlight for me. In every scene he bounces onto stage with a boundless smile and loads of enthusiasm. His dancing was excellent and the little bits of singing he did on stage showed great ability. The cake baking scene had me laughing out loud. I look forward to watching him in more productions in the future.
Each of the animals featured had their own individual personality on stage which was enhanced further by their costumes. I loved that the show featured music from lots of different sources like modern music as well as the golden age musicals (including 42nd Street). Mother Goose proves that a great panto isn’t just for Christmas and is a hilarious evening out for children of all ages!
Mother Goose continues at Wales Millennium Centre until April 1. Visit the website for ticket availability.