REVIEW- Red Riding Hood, New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich

Red Riding Hood at the New Wolsey Theatre in Ipswich
Red Riding Hood at the New Wolsey Theatre in Ipswich

A great annual theatre staple, the New Wolsey pantomime is back and it’s an utter blast from start to finish.

Packing in more laughs and songs than probably any other show in the region, this year sees Red Riding Hood getting the rock ‘n’ roll treatment in a sparkling retelling of the tale sprinkled with all the classic elements everyone knows and loves.

Opening number ‘Happy’ really sets the tone for the show and the following two and a half hours are a real thrill ride that will keep children and adults alike entertained and amused.

Slipping in topical jokes along with some double entendres that had the older members of the audience roaring with laughter and matching these alongside the fairy-tale story complete with heroes, villains, fools and a Dame, it was a show that always worked on many levels.

The creative team of Peter Rowe and Ben Goddard brilliantly constructed and directed a cast of actor/musicians who could not only sing, play and act with great skill but appeared to be having the time of their lives whilst doing it.

The two romantic leads Lucy Wells and Max Runham were superb in their roles and, in his Wolsey panto debut, Simon Nock was all you could wish for as the Dame: never subtle but absolutely hilarious.

To give away plot points or too many song choices would spoil the surprise, but it must be said that the performances of ‘Haven’t Met You Yet’, ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’, ‘Rollin’ in the Deep’ and ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll’ were truly phenomenal.

There are very few tickets left for the run so grab them while you can.

A perfect way to banish the Winter blues or as a pre or post-Christmas treat you couldn’t do better than this show. Perfect panto personified.