PANTO REVIEW: ‘Snow White and the Seven Sabden Dwarfs’, New Village Folk

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“THEATRICAL entertainment characterised by farce, music, lavish sets, stock roles and topical jokes.’’

That is the dictionary definition of pantomime and the New Village Folk Sabden’s production of “Snow White and the Seven Sabden Dwarfs’’ had all those ingredients and more!

With a cast ranging in age from nine to 50-plus, this was an hilarious presentation of the traditional fairy tale. A proper family show that kept my 13-year-old daughter and five-year-old son enthralled throughout. This is only the third production by this company and boy, didn’t they do well!

Making his debut as director, Ben Parsons did a superb job of making sure each scene was tight, concise and above all, funny and entertaining. And Ben also played the role of Muddles the Palace Footman with such beautiful comic timing, he almost stole the show!

I say almost because that honour was taken by Margaret Parsons in the role of Queen Evilena of Sabdonia. In her fabulous costume and make-up Margaret looked spectacularly scary as the wicked stepmother and the crowd erupted each time she appeared. But it wasn’t just her look, Margaret had a real stage presence that brought her character to life and I loved the haughty way she pointed her finger at the crowd each time she was booed. The scenes between Evilena and Muddles were very funny, a superb pairing that made a brilliant double act.

I loved Mark Woodward’s Dame Dora Dumpling. He played the part with the right mix of sauciness and humour that didn’t overshadow the other players as many actors who play the dame roles tend to do.

The young cast were very impressive and although nervous, you could see the hard work and effort that had gone into their roles. And they all looked like they were enjoying themselves on stage so the audience did too.

Maisie Yerkess was an exquisite Snow White, definitely one to watch especially considering she is just 12. Erin Fielding never stopped grinning as Prince Lancelot but her enthusiasm was wonderful to watch.

Congratulations to each and every one of the seven dwarfs who were very funny, each living up to their character’s names.

The show was packed with catchy songs that the audience loved joining in with and I was particularly impressed with the version of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.’’ The performance was dedicated to the memory of Jim Hindle, a founder member of the group who played the panto dame in the group’s first two productions before his untimely death from a heart attack in 2009.

New Village Folk you have done Jim proud.

The rest of the cast included: Simon Capstick (Marmaduke the court chamberlain), Dominic Collis (Herman the Huntsman), Diane Collinson (Hagwort the Terrible Troll), Brian Haythornthwaite (Voice of the Magic Mirror)

The Seven Dwarfs: Ciaron Fitzpatrick (Bossy), Louise Cunningham (Grumbly), Alma Thompson (Boozy), Martin Shorter (Sneezy), Ronan Fitzpatrick (Baggy), Ben Wain (Batty), Reece Farnhill (Dopey). Chorus and courtiers: Jean Haythornthwaite, Eliza Fielding, Beth Ashton, Caitlin Taylor, Emily Rickard, Megan Farnhill, Annie Finnegan and Caprice Boast.