THE PANTO was perfect. Oh, no it wasn’t! Oh, yes it was!
It really was that good — this year’s annual pantomime at the Civic delivered everything you would expect from a traditional panto and more.
There were brightly coloured costumes, a man dressed as a woman, a villain to boo and loads of audience participation.
Sleeping Beauty is the story of a princess who gets cursed by an evil witch just after she’s born — and is destined to prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel on her 18th birthday and die.
Lucky for her, there are some good fairies on hand to try and prevent this from happening.
How it ends...well you’ll have to go along to the panto yourself and find out.
What I can say is that it’s certainly worth a watch and brings something to the stage for all the family to enjoy.
The whole cast is very professional and really take to their roles like they have been playing their parts for years.
It is also great to see a cast including all age ranges.
Rotherham’s own Laura Judge plays the villainous Carabosse and certainly owns the stage from her very first scene to the last, with her shouting and evil laughter.
Georgia Newton plays both the Princess Rosa and good fairy Azurial and switches smoothly between the two characters with ease.
Her talent is clear to see, especially her fantastic singing voice.
Andy Abraham, the 2005 runner up on The X-Factor, plays King Hugo.
He also gives an energetic performance which had my feet tapping as most of his scenes include an upbeat musical number.
The comedy plaudits go to Kevin McGreevy as court jester Muddles and Tim Freeman as Nannie Annie.
Together, they are a laugh a minute and had me laughing non-stop on opening night in every one of their scenes.
Not everyone in the audience wasn’t very enthusiastic with joining in on the fun to start with, perhaps not knowing what to expect.
But by the second half, the theatre was filled with noise (despite it being just under half full), laughter, cheering and applause — and of course lots of people, both young and old, shouting ‘He’s there, he’s over there!’
Production company Imagine Theatre have added plenty of modern elements to make the panto stand out — particularly their take on Alexa the virtual assistant and nods to Meghan and Prince Harry and the Great British Bake- Off, as well the traditional gag or two about Rotherham itself.
Not forgetting to mention the fun R&B number and songs from Taylor Swift.
Sleeping Beauty is a panto must-see. And with performances on almost every day until January, you’ve no excuse for missing out on a fun family night out.