Take a rollercoaster ride across a mountain to escape the claws of a crafty canary and sail the seas on an adventure for the whole family, but don’t forget to save mother’s kippers along the way by screaming “Madame Poopda Deck there’s a kipper nicker!”
When looking at the posters you might think that the production of the Abergavenny Pantomime Company’s Sinbad would be all about pirates and treasure hunting but instead the plot is similar to that of Aladdin with a cheeky genie and the addition of a Welsh dame. Molly Brickley-Clarke stars as the main character, Sinbad the window cleaner who is frustrated because he is constantly being mistaken for the fierce legendary hero Sinbad the sailor. His feelings of anger drastically change when he meets the very beautiful yet slightly pretentious princess, (Ellie Nicholson) who has not yet been introduced to her husband to be. This is his opportunity for a happily ever after but there is only one thing stopping him, her evil uncle and his two henchmen!
The main characters are full of energy and well cast. Alex Williams, (formerly ‘The cowardly Lion’ in 2011’s Abergavenny Amateur Dramatic Society’s Wizard of Oz and Danny in 2013’s Grease) plays an outstanding villain whose character has all the cunningness of Lion King’s Scar plus haunting laughter as he casts his spells on the unaware characters. Other well thought out characters include his two henchmen, lispy twins, who he bought online to achieve his evil plan. Their slapstick and dumbness is amusing to watch and is sure to be a hit with small and older children.
There is a believable chemistry across the main cast. Louise Morgan plays Sinbad’s loyal likeable best friend who joins him for the journey. Ken Jones’ performance as the dame never ceases to bring comical value year upon year. Sinbad’s heartfelt solo sets were strong and well executed, drawing the audience into his love for the princess and enabling them to feel his longing to be with her.
Those within the chorus brought their usual energy and enthusiasm to the piece which added to the overall fun atmosphere. One little boy from the chorus tugged at the hearts of the audience as he sneaked back onstage to perform his own little dance number before being hurried off again by an adult cast member.
Unfortunately near the beginning of the performance, there were moments where the song lyrics felt drowned out by the orchestra playing but this may be because it was the first night and I am certain that this will be adjusted accordingly for the rest of the performances, (which will happen every night except for Sunday this week). Overall the performance was well crafted, with smooth transitions from scene to scene. It included all the elements that you could wish for in a pantomime; a funny and flamboyantly dressed dame with a natural knack of interacting with the audience, sweet throwing, lovable characters, ‘oh no he isn’t’ and humorous one liners for both adults and children.
It has a loose story line which is easy to follow but is fleshed out with a vast number of jokes, unexpected characters and well known contemporary sing along musical numbers ranging from Little Mix’s ‘Black Magic’ to Walk the Moon’s ‘Shut up and dance’ in the finale. I thoroughly enjoyed the production and believe that new and old fans will not be disappointed.
We hope you enjoyed our review. Let us know what you thought of the show in the comments below!