There have been many versions of Aladdin some very recently. This performance is based on the original story with modifications such as being transported from China to Egypt and return with the assistance of the Genie, David Kinna, and the Spirit of the Ring, Rhi Shapcott. Both complimented each other in their respective roles and the opening scene with Spirit of the Ring stepping out of a bath had the immediate attention of the audience.
Mike Pole as Abanazer played the part of the villain and seemed to enjoy the boos and hisses that he so frequently received in true panto style. Steven Brown as Aladdin and Annika Barry as Princess Jasmin were believable as the lovers made for each other. Annika’s voice was a standout in her solos and as part of the chorus. Samuel Creighton as Wishee Washee engaged the audience every time he appeared on stage by having them reply as Washee to his Wishee.
Hayley Mitchell as the Empress was delightful with her vamp style. The traditional role of a male performing as the panto dame was carried out with enthusiasm by Tim Cousins as Widow Twankey.
The Police Constables, Ping played by Lachlan Blackwell and Pong, Alicia Foster, bounced off each other in many scenes and added some of the slapstick humour that is expected in a pantomime.
The large chorus consisted of twenty-two performers many of whom played several roles and all added to the overall effect of the show.
The Director Damon Hill is to be congratulated for successfully putting together such a large cast and the design of the quite amazing sets. The costumes and the many changes were a credit to the crew. The inclusion of many local references and one-liners were cleverly interwoven in the script.
The choreography and singing were adequate for a panto. The chorus sang well but some of the solos needed a bit of work.
Overall this was a true traditional pantomime with audience participation. Young ones were encouraged to get on the stage and the generous laughter from the full house on opening night summed up the success of the show.Aladdin
Tea Tree Players
Tea Tree Players Theatre