Tuesday, 1 December 2015

Cinderella and the Beanstalk, Theatre503

SOMETIMES it's difficult to choose which Christmas show to go and see, such is the choice in South London.
But help is at hand because award-winning trio Sleeping Trees is returning to Theatre503 in Battersea with it's brilliantly conceived show Cinderella and the Beanstalk.
Essentially it is a glorious mash up of all the fairy tales, stories and pantomimes all rolled into one.
Directed by Tom Attenborough, this three-man pantomime with a twist combines the classic elements of a well-loved panto with an astonishing range of fast paced, physical and bare-knuckled comedy.
The premis is simple. After writing the script, booking the venue, building a set and hiring a musician, the boys - James Dunnell-Smith, Joshua George Smith and John Woodburn - realise they've forgotten one vital component - a cast.
They have no option but to perform the entire pantomime themselves, with only their dear friend Mark Newnham doing the music for company.
The audience will get to follow Cinderella on a perilous adventure as the scheming Rumple Stiltskin blackmails the would-be princess into retrieving the coveted golden eggs from the top of the beanstalk.
Cinderella must complete her quest in order to recover her glass slipper, but with Prince Charming, the Fairy Godmother and Jack’s pregnant cow all doing their best to get in the way, these delicious, oversized eggs may not be so easily sought out…
"It's mad and bonkers but it's great fun and we are delighted to be back at Theatre503 this year," says John.
"We have been refining the show since last year and added a bit for this year's run but essentially the narrative is the same.
"We always like working with fairy tales and stories and wanted to create a panto that combined nearly every story and panto that we knew of. Finding the balance was tricky but once we started it flowed really well!
"It also had to appeal to all the family which we think it does. It's slapstick, physical comedy and quite exhausting. But it's great fun."
With more than 40 characters to cram in some get longer on stage than others.
"Some are only on for 10 seconds but some get two minutes!" laughs John. "We have multiple costume changes but it's a story the audience can follow and they know which character we are at any time.
"It's fast and mad but that's just the way we like it!"

Cinderella and the Beanstalk is on at Theatre503 until January 2. Visit www.theatre503.com or call the box office on 020 7978 7040 for full listings.

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