Review by Richard Putnam.
6 July 2012
The young cast of The Princess and the Pea achieved something that many other amateur actors fail to do – make themselves heard and understood.
A lot of work went into the actors’ diction and it paid off. Almost without exception they spoke with clarity and avoided the temptation to gabble as if their lives depended upon it. There is nothing worse than attending live theatre and not being able to follow the plot and hear what is going on – even if it is based on such a well-known story as Hans Christian Andersen’s.
Rhiannon Shapcott and Lachlan Blackwell led the way as Isadora and Prince Harcourt. Joshua Brownlie as the king demonstrated effective pace of delivery and produced a worthy Scottish accent as the apothecary. Zack Brittan, one of the company’s youngest members, shone as the young Edgar and the trumpeter – effectively wielding an instrument longer than he is tall. It was a good demonstration of how to make the most of a small role.
This reviewer has previously baulked at attending a performance by young actors. On this occasion It was not only obvious a lot of people had put a vast amount of effort into this production – but it was well worth the effort.
The 25-strong cast was well balanced and ably supported by an even larger production team. Sound and lighting were used to good effect and timing; the colourful array of costumes provided visual appeal, while the many scene changes were at times a challenge to the continuity of the action.