Trouble in Pantoland – 2014

Cast’s cheerfulness infectious in festive show Trouble in Pantoland at Mackworth United Reformed Church, Derby

By Derby Telegraph | Posted: January 13, 2014

Trouble in Pantoland, by the Enfield Players, Mackworth United Reformed Church, Saturday

AN ambitious villain, squabbling goodies, hopeless helpers… Enfield Players’ latest production is a fast, witty romp that turns traditional fairy tales on their head.

Villainess Evil Evelyn has discovered that, if one more wedding takes place in Pantoland, an unleashed spell will banish all villains to the edge of Pantoland forever.

To stop this happening, Evelyn casts her own spell, sending two starry-eyed lovers to opposite ends of the kingdom. But true love prevails as the betrothed fight baddies, werewolves and the elements to find each other. As always, the Enfield Players have produced a bright, colourful, cheerful panto that is a feast for the senses. Scenery changes in the blink of an eye. One minute we’re in a castle, the next a forest. The ingenuity of the stage crew and the sumptuous production design give it a magical atmosphere.

All of the hard work backstage is enlivened by a sunny and enthusiastic cast, whose cheerfulness is infectious.

Gemma Saunders’ Evil Evelyn is a cackling highlight, handling a witty, quip-filled script with ease. Johnny and Joseph White were an audience highlight as the dim-witted helpers Nick and Nack, and Amy Potter and Amy Meakin are winsome and courageous as the Princess and Prince respectively. My favourite would have to be Ann Potter’s Gertie, whose attempts to win over the audience were a constant delight – never has terrible singing been so funny.

Altogether, the cast are lively and funny, making for a sparkling, magical night out. Wonderful fun. The Enfield Players continue with Trouble in Pantoland, at Mackworth United Reformed Church this weekend. It is being staged from Thursday to Saturday at 7.15pm (plus a 2.15pm matinee on Saturdays).

For more details and tickets, call 01332 514956 or visit www.enfieldplayers.co.uk.

Kevin Redfern