Leslie Judd reviews Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
by Julie Petrucci and Chris Shinn
performed by Waterbeach Theatre Company
directed by Kattreya Scheurer-Smith

I was very glad that I had been able to get away from stock taking to dash from Sutton near Ely to Waterbeach to sit down and enjoy a Pantomime.

There was quite a crowd and they were obviously expecting a good night's entertainment, and they weren't to be disappointed. As soon as the curtain went up, we knew we were in for a good show as Fairy (Claire McDonald) introduced us to the story and the company. The company really got stuck in the show and what I really liked was that it wasn't an enormous company, nine principals, seven dwarfs and a chorus of Nine, so the stage was not overcrowded, and all the company could be seen. When you go to a pantomime you want to see friends and family performing, not struggling to see so and so in the back line. For this show one was able to see all, to hear all, often I've sat and not really seen mouths opening let alone heard. I also didn't notice any struggles with the choreography, this was a well-disciplined company, with good choreography and good clear sound.

The set was most effective and well lit, you don't need much more than a good back cloth if the show is lit appropriately for each scene and for all the cast to be doing the right thing. What set dressing that was required such as a table and chairs in The Dwarfs cottage, were appropriate, the back cloths for The Palace, The Forrest and the Cottage were all very good, and as said, the lighting was good and imaginative, not over powering or over the top.

Costumes were very good, particularly picking out the Fairy's costume, the Dames Costumes for Nanny Annie, Queen Morgana's costume and the 'uniform' for Click and Collect. The Dwarfs were also appropriately dressed for their characters, Prince Caspian was dressed as appropriate for a Prince. Thought and time had not been stinted on the Company's costumes either, being appropriately dressed for each role whether it be a villager, courtier or the three Superbs who shimmered their way through the show. The UV sequence was well lit and well costumed, this was an entertaining sequence. That was properly black for the rear of the stage. Of course, the dress for Snow White and Mini Snow White was totally correct (a nice touch that, Mini Snow White).

This show benefitted from what appeared to be careful and thoughtful casting, the Fairy who linked throughout, clearly spoken and with a twinkle in her eye, Snow White - Lola Foltynie as a sweet innocent girl suffering an evil step mother menacingly played by Vicki Hingley, she well deserved her booing. Prince Cassian - Jess Hamill strutting her way to the rescue of Snow White and nearly bringing the house down with 'The Diva's Lament'. Two of the few male roles King Percival - Stephen Smith who was blinded by love and Woody - John Meredith who saw through the evil queen. The comedy duo Click and Collect respectively Emma Foltynie and Oli Howard played off well against each other, nice and clearly spoken so the gags were heard and good facial expressions, also supporting Nanny Annie. This was a tour de force by Gareth Atkinson, a great stage presence, these three had great fun with Ghost Busters, without a doubt Nanny was the star of the show, closely followed by Lola.

There was something that I liked, and it was a novel idea, the Magic Mirror was not a mirror but a shimmering glittery costumed character, who mirrored the movement and action of Queen Morgana, a brightness contrasting with the darkness of the Queen's costume she was portrayed by Choreographer Emma Bolton Luckie.

Some little stars in their own right were the dwarfs played by Polly, Erben, Johnny, Henry, Owen, Scarlet and Abi, good characterisation for children, costumes and make-up were good and they could all be heard clearly, Sassy was sassy, Snoozy always asleep, I Loved chilly covered in clothes, Boozy also having a stagger or two, Bossy suited the part also as Mini Snow White, I loved Drippy (must have taken a while getting used to saying White Snow) and Droopy who did the breakdancing, I loved that short sequence, was it his idea? These youngsters were confident and professional, the pick of the bunch I understand.

The singing throughout this show was nearly Superb, well it would be with The Three Superbs as backing singers. Company singing was good, I couldn't fault any Company Numbers and the solo numbers and duets were good with the youngsters 'Shake it Off' another good performance.

This was a good show, professionally produced and directed, great to chat with Kattreya in the interval and the experience she has had as a performer has greatly helped her with this directorial role and much supported by Choreographer Emma and the Writers Julie Petrucci and Chris Shinn, finally thank you for your hospitality and I shall look forward to Robin Hood next year.

Leslie Judd. NODA Representative District 4 North

Waterbeach Theatre Company
All performances at
Waterbeach School
Cambridge CB25 9JU

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