It was an early 7pm start for the Opening Night of “Alice in Wonderland” at Monarto War Memorial Hall.
Lewis Carroll’s classic story is given a few interesting twists in William Glennon’s adaptation. Carlie Gibbs was first time Director, and she was mentored by Janene Overton. They both did a great job.
The hall was filled with excited Mums and Dads, siblings, supporters and friends of the 25 young actresses and actors. We waited, when the lights went out, in excited anticipation, for the curtain to open. Finally some chattering came from the back of the hall, down the aisle, as all the characters entered, in little groups, to start the action on the steps at front of the stage. They were looking for an “Alice”. Luckily they found one – who wanted something different and unusual to happen. Alice enjoyed her trip in Wonderland. There were some new characters there – the Duchess and the Cook.
Kaitlyn Gibbons as the White Rabbit was, for me, the best character, who kept the whole play together and provided lots of comic relief any time she came onto the stage! Second best was Kiahna Smith whose Cook’s hat was nearly as big as her stage presence and attitude! Danae Verwey’s loud obnoxious Queen of Hearts, Rhianon Bowley’s languid mystical Cheshire Cat and Maddie Stock’s whimsical version of the Mad Hatter also were very good. Actually everyone in the cast, most playing multiple parts, gave excellent performances. I loved the scene changes, which were done in full view of the audience. Iain
Lewcock and his Team’s set and stage design were also very colourful and clever.
Costumes by Michelle Gibbs and Samantha Pope and Team were superb!
Everything ran like clockwork, and timing, lighting and sound was well co-ordinated.
The audience laughed, clapped and got involved in the whole performance, and we all enjoyed Cheshire Cat biscuits, nuts and bolts, cup and saucer biscuits and Red Velvet Cupcakes in the interval.
There were only four shows, and I’m sure that they are all as good, if not better, than the one I enjoyed.