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REVIEW: Mother Goose, Princess Theatre Hunstanton

Covid-era panto season saw the Princess Theatre Hunstanton at maximum socially-distanced capacity for the opening of Tom Rolfe's Mother Goose yesterday.

Masks were mandatory throughout the performance for audience members, however this didn't deter from that distinct panto flavour.

Comedy duo Sweet and Simple (Lee and Lynn Carrol) opened the show as Madame Vanity and Oddjob.

Madame Vanity was wearing a glittery getup that wouldn't look out of place on RuPaul's Drag Race and a sassy attitude to match.

The pair bounced off each other with humorous jokes and even some Covid-19 references thrown in, sparking laughs from the audience.

We were then introduced to Mother Goose played by 'Hunstanton favourite' Mervyn Francis and his son Billy Goose (Tom Shiels).

Misfortune met the pair as Vanity ups the rent on their property. They lament on how they might have to "Get a flat in Swaffham" (clearly the situation was dire).

However a green-garbed Fairy Virtue (Bessie Mae Swan) sweeps in to save the day, not only with her stunning vocals, but with a hearty dose of fairy dust.

Infused with mystical glitter, Pricsilla the Goose (Tommy J Rollason) makes his entrance, much to the delight of the children.

The magic eggs do their thing and soon Mother Goose is rolling in riches. However, as the fairtytale goes, Mother G starts to crave more than material wealth. Madame Vanity offers her eternal beauty in exchange for her goose and she accepts. As a millennial female, I concur that an exchange of poultry for eternal youth is a better deal than botox, so I can't entirely judge her here.

In the brief interim the audience was wowed by the juggling antics of "TJ" (Tommy J Rollason) as he took a break from laying polystyrene eggs to bounce balls and juggle pins, receiving a hearty applause.

Alice (Hannah Kiss) and Billy Goose performed a wonderful feel good duet and a hilarious "Balloon ballet" with possibly non-intended, but nonetheless naughty connotations which garnered a few chuckles from the adult members of the audience.

The show was just the right length for a pantomime with fun costumes, great vocals from all of the cast and good old fashioned interaction from the audience.

"Dolly Parton" (and her overstuffed chest) even made an appearance, with a loud wolf-whistle from the back row.

Great feel good fun for bith children and adults. A must watch this winter to fend off the Covid blues.

The panto runs until January 1.

Eve Tawfick

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