Either extreme luck, or excellent planning, meant that this production coincided with the school's half term break, meaning the audience was full of children which made the experience a little more pantomime than would be my preference, but I can hardly hold this against the group.
The plot and songs match the film almost exactly, meaning it was essential the cast lived up to the amazing performances from the film as well, which was achieved by the vast majority of the cast.
The casting of the principle line up was perfect. Michael James' Caractacus Potts was upbeat and a bit eccentric, but softer when required (during Hushabye Mountain for example). Ian Scoging managed to be even more eccentric in the role of Grandpa Potts, a role I particularly enjoyed watching. Playing Truly Scrumptious was Claire Poth-Wright, her rendition of Doll on a Music Box, was so good, it gave me chills. Playing the villain of the piece, the Childcatcher, was Josh Handley who gave a truly spine chilling performance bringing back all the nightmares of Robert Helpmann's film version. Baron and Baroness Bomburst were played by Luke Hunt-Coldham and Louise Kempton. They had great stage presence and a strong chemistry which resulted in some of the funniest moments of the show. Another strong comedy pairing was that of Nick Poth and Joe Drury as Goran (Gordon) and Boris (Doris). Their number, Act English, which I do not believe was in the film version, along with their whole performance was superbly funny.
Several other cast members took named roles, all of whom, along with the incredibly large ensemble of both adults and children, added to the impact of this fantasmagorical
A special mention has to go to the two youngsters who took on the roles of Jeremy and Jemima Potts - Kian Terry and Violet Bessant - both of whom did excellently and have delightful voices.
Musically, the cast were spot on throughout, although highlights for me included, as well as those mentioned earlier: Posh!, The Roses of Success, Chu-Chi Face and Teamwork. Well done to Musical Director, Sue Edwards, for creating a sound so close to the film soundtrack, it wouldn't have surprised me if it had been a recording.
A further special mention has to go to the dancers in general, but specifically in both Toot Sweets and Me Ol' Bamboo. Lively, upbeat and full on, the moves fitted the songs well and were performed brilliantly. Well done to the choreographer, David Street, and dance captain, Ellie Littlejohns, for getting the dancers to such a high standard.
Overall I enjoyed the show and the cast, crew and creative team should be proud of the excellent show they put on.
PTC's next outing is to be the original story of The Greatest Showman - Barnum.