There’s plenty to keep you awake in The Anvil’s fantastic Christmas pantomime, as Sleeping Beauty sets the alarm for some festive fun!
With all the traditional pantomime elements we’ve come to know and love, including glittering costumes, amazing sets, catchy songs and a large helping of good old fashioned humour, grown-ups are sure to enjoy this show just as much as the little ones.
The timeless story of Sleeping Beauty is given a fresh modern take, referencing everything from Pokemon Go to hashtags and Tinder and there’s enough excitement to keep younger members of the family entertained.
The kingdom is celebrating the birth of Princess Briar Rose, and the kindly Snowflake Fairy (Hollyoaks’ Sarah-Jane Buckley) leads the festivities, treating us to a beautiful rendition of Pure Imagination from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
There’s only one problem: someone forgot to invite the wicked fairy Carabosse (played with evident relish by Only Fools and Horses’ Sue Holderness), and when she crashes the party things take a sinister turn.
Enraged by the snub, Carabosse curses the infant Princess, dooming her to prick her finger on a spinning wheel and fall down dead on her 18th birthday.
The Snowflake Fairy manages to temper the spell however, so that Briar Rose will not die, but fall asleep for 100 years.
Fast forward 18 years and we meet the grown-up Princess (CBeebies’ Nina and the Neurons star Katrina Bryan) getting ready to celebrate her birthday again.
Bryan’s charming pop princess brings us bang up to date with a lively version of Meghan Trainor’s ‘Better When I’m Dancing’, ably supported by the hilarious hijinx of her best mate and comedy sidekick Silly Billy (comedian Mark James).
The King, played by Phil Cole, isn’t left out of the fun either, as he addresses his subjects with a right royal rapping proclamation.
No panto is complete without a Dame of course, and Sleeping Beauty has a consummate professional in Charles Burden, celebrating his 50th year of performing.
This time around he’s playing Nanny Glucose, whose winning warmth and charm will enchant the children, while throwing in some playfully risqué jokes for the adults.
When Briar Rose meets the handsome Prince Phillip (Ben Harlow) ahead of her birthday party, all looks to be heading for a romantic and happy outcome, but what about the curse?
With stunning special effects and winning songs, this is a great Christmas trip out for the whole family. Will evil triumph? Oh no it won’t!
Head to The Anvil until January 2 to find out – you won’t be disappointed.