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Robin Hood – Theatr Clwyd, Mold

Reviewer: Clare Boswell

Writer: Christian Patterson

Director: Tamara Harvey

Theatre Clwyd’s annual ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll’ Panto continues its tradition of being a highlight of many a Flintshire family’s festive calendars with its latest offering Robin Hood.  Christian Patterson once again has penned a riotously entertaining take on the classic story and this is complemented further by Tamara Harvey’s consummate direction and Adrian Gee’s immersive set design. Patterson treads the line perfectly between inserting enough originality into the proceedings to make the show feel fresh whilst also ensuring that neither the script nor production tampers too much with the classic ingredients of a festive panto. There is an abundance of ear-busting songs, cheesy dance routines, cracking fight sequences and live music and the immensely talented cast of actor-musicians ensures that these are all delivered with aplomb throughout.

Connor Going plays protagonist Robin Hood assuredly, striking up a warm and natural rapport with his audience immediately. Chioma Uma is delightful as Jolly Goodfellow whilst Celia Cruwys-Finnigan charms as feisty Maid Marion. No Theatr Clwyd pantomime would be complete without a turn from Phylip Harries and his performance as Lady Myfanwy of Mold does not disappoint. Harries’s comedic timing and inpromptu moments with the audience are incomparable and his moments with Daniel Lloyd as Little John are a complete pleasure to behold.  Caitlin Lavagna  gives a master-class in character acting with her portrayal of Snot and Joe Butcher wins hands down for ‘best costume’ with his cameo as Gruffydd Llywelyn.  However, it is Ben Locke that really impresses as a melodramatic ‘Lord Flashheart’ inspired Sherriff; his physical presence is mesmerising.

There were, as expected, a plethora of local in-jokes and topical quips throughout the evening and there are no prizes for guessing that the majority of these centred around Liz Truss and Matt Hancock. There were also just the right amount of innuendo to keep the grown ups entertained but these never felt overly smutty and were, as evidenced from the wealth of laughter emanating from the packed-out auditorium, genuinely funny.

Patterson’s script knows exactly what it’s doing and, as ever, the immensely talented cast at Theatre Clwyd all play their parts to perfection. Add to this mix a captivating set and an infectious musical score and the result is a roaringly successful evening of festive fun.

Runs until 14 January 2023


The Reviews Hub Score

Riotously entertaining

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