You know you’re onto a winner when the kids are giving it welly at the panto and that ‘Everything Is Awesome’ because that’s the song that’s got them all riled up.
This year’s Cinderella show at the Everyman theatre in Cork is family panto of the classic kind, replete with hairy legged dame, dashing prince, slightly under-qualified fairy godmother, sweet little Cinders and two scene-stealing goons in the form of Verucca and Vinaigrette Overdrawn, aka the Ugly Sisters.
It’s a bright buoyant production with good sets, great costumes and plenty of lively audience interaction with the usual topicality, glitter, campness and well-placed pop songs.
In fact, the singing is worth an extra mention because this year Prince Charming is played by Keith Hanley, 2013 winner of RTÉ’s Voice of Ireland.
Himself and Cinders (Clodagh Downey) make a good hand of the Sam Smith hit ‘Stay with Me’. He also makes at decent stab at that tricky Hozier number ‘Take Me to Church’.
Clodagh plays Cinders exactly as I imagined the fairytale character and indeed all the casting is solid — from Frank Twomey as the Dame Cattie Buttons to Michael Sands as Dandini and Kelly-Ann Murphy as Calinda the fairy godmother.
She pulls off a neat bit of magic in the first half and the scene just before the interval where Cinders prepares to leave for the ball is a highlight.
Ciaran Bermingham as Verucca was for me, the standout performance.
All in all it’s two-and-a-half hours of wholesome family fun, with a matinee recommended for smallies.
I brought a tot under three and he spent the show crawling under seats. The older kids loved it.
A word of advice: use the loo before you leave home to avoid queues at the interval.