January 29 2018, Cinderella Trophy Reviews
By Nigel Ford
I always receive a friendly welcome when I enter the Victoria Hall in Crewkerne. This evening was no exception. It was here that CUDOS was performing Snow White.
Written and directed by the gifted Ann Brolly I knew that I was going to be in for a fun packed entertaining evening. I was not to be disappointed.
Here was a production that had all the right mixtures of a traditional pantomime and nostalgia plus those ‘certain extras’ thanks to the talents of your director.
The best shows are those productions where humour is delivered with confidence. There was many a laugh to be heard in the market square this Saturday night!
Mutt and Jeff played by William Scott-Robinson and Diana Hodgson blended well as a comedy duo and both showed real commitment to their roles. I enjoyed the well-rehearsed decorating scene. Nice comedy-play with those planks too! I just wondered if a little splashing about with water in the bucket and on the paint brush would have added visual comedy appeal to this slapstick moment.
Ray Norris’s Nurse Nora gave us a loveable brash Dame. You improve each year I watch you Ray although your dress sense did not match your personality. You come across as looking feminine when you needed to look robust. Replacing your ‘girlie’ wigs for loud outrageous ones and exchanging ladies shoes for good old traditional black boots or coloured Doc Martens would have enhanced your appearance immediately. Nonetheless you played your part well.
Sian Flint’s Snow White captured the innocence of this character with an attractive vocal tone. You played your part with great assurance. Just one minor point – you needed more theatrical expression when taking a bite of the apple. Many ‘Snow Whites’ fall into the trap of quickly placing the apple to their lips and immediately fall to the floor. A slower approach of pretending to take a bite, waiting just a second and then falling will give a more convincing performance. You have a lovely singing voice. Over the Rainbow was breath taking and sung with aplomb. I may have liked to have heard your own version though as opposed to Eva Cassidy’s.
There were many other memorable moments for me. How I loved your team of Ologists. This alternative was different but these characters engaged with us immediately. I liked them a lot – another comedy element thanks to the talents of George Flint’s Rupert Aloysius.
All eyes were drawn to your magical mirror. This was cleverly thought through and I loved the banter with Sarah Elliott’s Queen Wanda the Wicked.
The company all worked extremely hard and it was undoubtedly clear that you had done everything that the director and choreographer had asked of you. Although I had difficulty in hearing every word this was an excellent choral effort in terms of singing and movement. Well done to the whole team.
All costumes were society made and looked very stylish indeed. I would have had contrasting colours for the Dame in two of the scenes though. She needed to clash, not blend in!
Sets were relatively simple but it was lighting that enriched this production.
This was without doubt a colourful, comical and captivating pantomime by CUDOS that I thoroughly enjoyed. Thank you for a great evening’s entertainment.