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PANTO REVIEW: Mother Goose at the Marlowe Theatre

Friday 6th December 2019




Mother Goose, The Marlowe

Review: Lesley Finlay

Picture: Pamela Raith Photography

There is something missing in the pantomime Mother Goose. Love interest. So it gives writers carte blanche to adapt the story in any way possible. And that is what writer and director Paul Hendy did, updating with the ubiquitous modern-day conundrum of how beauty comes from within, and that money does not buy happiness. Of course, this is panto, and the rather worthy theme is presented with the fantastic energy of panto, as well as being gently mocked too.

That said, Marlowe knows how to deliver a panto; the audience knows and were ready with the traditional Canterbury line ‘that’s the law’ and the ‘Wheelbarrow of Pun’ that never fails to delight, whatever the theme. Everything about the show is aimed to give us some sparkle – both in the run-up to Christmas and afterwards; adding a (literally) glittering spectacle. The set glistens, the costumes shine and the energy transports you to Mother Goose world.

Although this is an ensemble show, Ben Roddy took centre stage to celebrate his 10th year as the Marlowe dame. He really knows how to work his crowd – even ‘Andy’ the reluctant stooge from the audience. His energy, humour and tone are a masterclass. He is more than well support by Lloyd Hollett (another Canterbury favourite) as well as the stars from TV Dr Ranj (great dancing), Jenna Russell and Marc Pickering.

The music is wonderful – and this year musical director Chris Wong came down from his box and dazzles in a golden suit as a rock god.   

There is a reason this panto is the one that everyone talks about it – it’s simply brilliant. Unless your name is Andy, of course.

There are some tickets left but as word gets out, these will go quickly. Book now