Presented by Tea Tree Players
Reviewed 23 November 2018
When November comes around you know it’s time for the annual Pantomime from Tea Tree Players, and judging from the audience reaction with this performance they have certainly delivered once again!
Ben Crocker’s Puss In Boots is a tale loved by all ages, and Director Robert Andrews has lead a fine cast of Tea Tree Players regulars and newcomers, all clearly enjoying the audience participation and mischief of a Pantomime. The set was brightly illuminated, especially during the forest scenes, credit to Andrews, Mike Phillips and Damon Hill. Costuming and make-up complimented the leads, and there were some very creative ideas such as the bad rabbits and both ‘Puss’ costumes. I did find the music to be a tad soft in some numbers, with some actors also not projecting loud enough without mics.
Hayley Mitchell and Theresa Dolman narrate – both naturals on stage – ensuring that the younger audience members are always involved and enjoying the experience. Barry Hill never misses a beat, and thrived as Queen Wendy, complete with a fiery-red wig and delivering a saucy but tasteful strip tease in Act II. He is complimented well by Frank Cwiertniak as King Wally, who makes the most of his limited dialogue before finding his voice. Steve Mulady also delivers a menacing yet lovable portrayal of Grimgrab the Ogre.
As well as some of the more experienced Tea Tree Players performers, there were a number of outstanding performances from the younger members of the cast. Amber Platten was sweet and charming as Princess Esmeralda, and was vocally one of the strongest leading a number of the musical numbers with Rhiannon Shapcott, who played Bobbi and Michaela Arnold, who played Puss. All three worked well with the audience encouraging participation and plenty of laughs. Shapcott and Arnold are also to credit for choreography.
Finally, a special mention must be given to two young performers I hope to see continue with not only Tea Tree Players, but many more things to come. Harrison Morris and Soren Kubenk were just hilarious as Jasper and Jethro, the two bumbling brothers of Jack, played by Kristyn Barnes. Morris and Kubenk have nailed the comic timing and get a vast majority of the audience’s laughter, especially during their quest for love with Babs (Jaye Sison) and Betty (Georgina Giessauf).
Tea Tree Players have delivered another highly enjoyable Pantomime, and this is a fun night out for kids and the big kids at heart. Don’t forget to cheer for the hero, boo the bad guys and sing along with the Christmas song at the end!
Reviewed by Daniel Knowles
Venue: Tea Tree Players Theatre, (Gate one, Tilley Recreational Park, Surrey Downs), Corner of Yatala Vale and Hancock Roads, Surrey Downs
Season: 23 November – 8 December 2018
Duration: 2 acts approx 1 hour each with 20 minute interval in between
Tickets: Adults $15 Concession $13
Bookings: Box Office is open between 10am and 1pm Tuesdays and Thursdays, and messages can be left on our 24 hour telephone service on 8289 5266 Or tickets can be purchased online at www.teatreeplayers.com