Book: James Lapine
Music and Lyrics: Stephen Sondheim
Reviewer: Danielle Shields
After 2013’s gritty adaptation of Jim Cartwright’s poverty stricken playRoad,centered on Thatcher’s regime, it comes as a surprise that accidentallyon Purpose Productions have returned to Greenside @ Nicolson Square with a fun fairytale musical. As much as Into the Woods Jnr is a pleasing experience for youngsters; itis the adults in the audience who are the most entertained.
Stephen Sondheim’s child friendly version of the Grimm Fairy Talesbrings some of the brothers’ most adored characters together in a magical forest; Cinderella wishes to attend the King’s festival, Jack wishes Milky White – his best friend and a cow – would produce milk and the Baker and his Wife wish for a child. There is a lot of wishing going on in this enchanted world and it becomes a race against time to see whocan make their wishes come true.
The large cast, mainly composed of students from Loughborough University, are a bundle of energy which helps in pulling off the speedy production. Despite a lot of action taking place, each actor carries off a smooth and realistic performance that is filled with humour, particularly in the iconic scene where two Princes meet. Accompanied by a live piano, Sondheim’s lyrics are delivered seamlesslywiththe sweetest voice comes from the youngest actress in the cast who portrays Little Red Ridinghood.
The set is inventive,including mighty umbrellas varying in shades of green which blossom into a unique beanstalk.This is a vivid, bright,jam packed production of fairy tale delight.
Runs until Sat 23rdAug