Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs- Churchill Theatre Pantomime

Snow White
Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs- Churchill Theatre Pantomime

This years pantomime offering from the Churchill Theatre, Bromley is Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The star attractions are Jessie Wallace, Pete Firman, Jason Sutton and Oliver Tompsett.

Snow WhiteThe story of Snow White is one well know to us all although to accommodate your pantomime favourites a Dame is introduced in the form of Snow White’s nurse maid, Nancy. Muddles, Nancy’s son, who also happens to be in love with Snow White is the hapless audience friend. Of course love always prevails in panto land and the story ends, as per the fairy tale version with a big royal wedding.

The first thing that struck me with the show was actually how good all of the cast were. You often expect with a pantomime to be some duffs in the cast who are there on their name alone and to sell tickets. This was not the case in the Churchill’s offering this year. Between Jessie Wallace and Oliver Tompsett they stole the show. Tompsett you would expect nothing less from with his leading West End man status. Wallace on the other hand is best known as Kat Slater in Eastenders, although as her bio points out she is no stranger to the stage. Wallace cackles and crows her way to a successful Queen Lucretia and whips the children up into a booing frenzy.

The rest of the cast also play their parts well with Pete Firman as Muddles and his magician skills being put to good use and Naomi Cowe playing Snow White with typical innocence but a good voice to boot. Snow White isn’t know for it’s Dame and therefore Jason Sutton doesn’t get as much on stage time as your typical Dame might but he makes sure that each moment on that stage counts.

The dwarfs were played by dancers on their knees (think the musical version of Lord Farquaad from Shrek). Some of the jokes between them felt stilted and I would have liked to have seen more interesting movement between them to play on the fact that they are men on their knees rather than dwarfs.

Snow White

Photos: Craig Sugden

 

The script and gags vary wildly. Some are inventive with a word play gag running with famous songs to your traditional ’12 days of Christmas’ performed by only 4 people. On occasion I would have liked a bit more, sometimes more tradition with more ‘He’s behind you’ or ‘oh no it isn’t’ and other times a bit more innovation with time relevant jokes missing as well as fresh ideas. Whilst pantomime is a traditional event it works best when it is spiced up with something unexpected. The story line feels rushed in places and the main part of the Snow White we know and love, i.e. Snow White’s time with the dwarfs is rushed.

The music was mostly pop songs and whilst all of them had fun dance routines and good vocals many of the numbers were very similar. The set itself is literally dripping in glitter and the magic mirror provides a clever effect. That along with the bright and lavish costumes gives the feel that no expense has been spared on this show and helps capture the younger members of the audience’s attention from the very first scene.

Overall it was a fun, lavish pantomime with a talented cast but to take it to the next level more varied songs and a better thought out script and jokes would have made it a real winner.

To find out more about Snow White visit the Churchill Theatre website.

If you liked this review you might also like my review of Matilda and School of Rock.

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