Peter Pan by Mary Stevens Hospice
Reviewed 17th February 2023
In the words of a popular TV dance show judge – FAB-U-LOUS! Having never seen a pantomime version of peter Pan, I was a little nervous, but I needn’t have worried as right from the start I had a wide grin on my face! With a script by Steve Arnott & Michael Harrison, and under the direction of Will Phipps, the show kept what looked like a full house entertained from start to finish. Lighting, scenery and costumes were amazing, and Mr Smee’s surprise ‘flight’ over the audience at the end of act 1 has to be seen to be believed.
While much of the cast is made up from local amateur performers, you wouldn’t know. The dancers, under the direction of James Totney put on a fantastic performance throughout and should be rightly prod of themselves. Local drama student Charlie Bullock put in a sterling performance in the titular role of Peter Pan, and has a great voice which I would have liked to hear more of. I am sure we will see a lot more of him in the future.
The comedy was provided by local children’s entertainer Wally Wombat as Mrs Smee, and Will Phipps as her son Mr Smee, and boy did they keep everyone laughing. At times I don’t know how Will managed to keep a straight face opposite the hilarious but subtle Mr Wombat. Watch out if you don’t join in the fun though, as Mrs Smee will gladly (and with a rye smile) throw you out, to much laughter from the rest of the audience.
One of the magical things about the Mary Steven’s Hospice pantomimes, is that each year they actually have ‘stars’ asking to take part. This year that mantle is taken on by X-factor’s Christopher Maloney as Captain Hook, and Gogglebox’s Sandi Bogle as the magical mermaid. Christopher was clearly enjoying himself as the evil Hook, delivering a powerful performance and blowing the roof off with his rock numbers. Sandi was great too in the narrator style role of the mermaid, and has a very pleasant singing voice.
The pantomime is all in aid of raising much needed funds to keep the Mary Steven’s Hospice open and providing much needed support. Many pantomime industry leaders give their services free of charge to support, and the results are simply outstanding. Hats off to Amanda Bowen and the rest of the team. It really is a show not to be missed, and I for one, and looking forward to next year’s show.
Peter pan runs until Wednesday 22nd Febryary 2023, at Stourbridge Town Hall, Stourbridge DY8 1YE. Get your tickets now before they sell out!