Dates and Venue 25 November-6 December @ 7:30 pm, matinees Saturday and Sunday @ 2:30 pm.| Surrey Arts Centre Main Stage Theatre (88th Avenue and King George Highway, Surrey)
Reviewer Ed Farolan
Aladdin Panto was indeed fun for the whole family! I guess what the kids most enjoyed in the matinee performance I went to last Saturday was the singing and dancing. The children in the cast were very talented, and the audience were amused by their rendition of songs and dances.
The dialogue with corny jokes is part of the panto tradition, but the kids didn't go too much for these jokes, as some of them went over their heads.
What impressed me the most were the colourful sets and beautiful costumes. The kids in the audience also enjoyed the usual booing the villains and cheering for the good guys. This was quite a talented cast, especially veteran actors Arne Larsen (Abanazar) and Roger Hussen (Emperor). Sheida Livai (Aladdin) wasn't too bad as a beginning performer. I think she needs to be more energetic and enthusiastic in her role.
Sydney Balston was quite good as Princess So-Posh. Peter Roberts as Widow Twankey somewhat had fun playing this role. Graham Steeksma was quite versatile playing multiple roles (Abanazar's nephews). James Walker (The Grand Vizier) needed to project more and enunciate his lines more clearly. He should probably get a lesson or two from the crispy clear and resonating voice of Christopher Gaze.
All in all it was an exciting and colourful magic carpet ride, although there was no magic carpet which would have been interesting, but I suppose this is a difficult and expensive technical task for a community theatre's budget.
2009 Ed Farolan