REVIEW: 'Magic' Cinderella pantomime returns to Windsor

Until Sunday, January 10 Cinderella Theatre Royal Windsor

Siobhan Newman

REVIEW: 'Magic' Cinderella pantomime returns to Windsor

“Anticipation’s in the air,” sings Cinderella at Windsor’s Theatre Royal, and it really is.

Pantomime is such an important tradition to so many people and there was a   definite sense of joy in the audience that we were, at last, going  to the ball.

And we had one... From the moment Debbie McGee twirls onto stage as Fairy Twinkletoes, the baddies and the badness of 2020 seem to  disappear.

We meet sweet and cheeky Buttons – played by Windsor favourite Kevin Cruise – and   Basil ‘the Baron’ Hardup of Frogmore village.

Somehow famous Basil Brush  is father to the beautiful Cinderella (Alice Fillary). Well – she does have auburn hair.

The baron’s hardupness is due to his stepdaughter, the Ugly Sister Lavitia, also known as ‘Lavvy’. Steven Blakeley has been a dame every Christmas here for 11 years and this year’s costumes are particularly inspired. The poodle perm one is just sublime.

Blakeley writes the show and has made  a few  nods to topical events but the experience is all about pantomime,  not pandemic.

Live musicians, sumptuous costumes and  a talented dance crew add to the glamour and  escapist fun.  My son thought the male dancers especially were ‘brilliant’.

 I had wondered beforehand  if social distancing would mean no live ponies for Cinderella’s carriage. I don’t want to give away what actually happens in the transformation scene  but well done Windsor – it’s magic. 

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