Take the second star to the right and straight on to panto heaven. This seasonal show is full of cheer, colour, spectacle, song and dance.
From the opening number – Step in Time – to the rousing finale, the panto runs at full pelt. It’s cheeky, nice and a little bit naughty.
This year star billing goes to Arthur Bostram, best known as the gendarme who mispronounced his words in the sitcom ‘Allo ‘Allo! He plays the dasterdly Captain Hook and the cantankerous Mr Darling.
The script pays homage to his role as Office Crabtree with at least one ‘Good Moaning’. The grown-ups got them as for the youngsters they were more than happy to hiss and boo him as he tried nefarious ways to get Peter Pan.
The chief Lost Boy was cute as a button Matt Brinkler who was also in fine voice.
Chrissy Kett was a wonderful Wendy and Carys Gray dual-rolled as Mrs Darling and Tiger Lily.
The engine room of this show is children’s TV favourite and all round entertainer Simon J Grant as Smee. This is his fourth panto at the Spa.
The children love his cheekiness and he has enough energy to light up a thousand Christmas trees. He is simply magic.
Step forward my favourite character in any panto (if it’s played well) the dame. Joe Standerline plays Dame Able Mabel and he’s up there with the best.
Perfect comic timing, outrageous one-liners and done-up in colourful attire and bold make-up. Music hall will always be around while there are actors of this calibre playing a dame.
Adding charm and chorus are members of Collette Tyler School of Dance.
Let’s not forget the strong storyline which really does hook its audience – or the thrilling flying sequences and spectacular sets and staging.
Put this altogether and you have a top-notch family pantomime fit to grace any stage.
The venue has come on in leaps and bounds in the last few years and the investment in quality is clear.
It runs until Sunday January 3.
Performance times: Dec 17 at 10.15am, 7pm; Dec 19 and 20 at 1pm, 5pm; Dec 21 and 22 at 2pm and 6pm; Dec 22 at 5.3opm and 7.30pm; Dec 23 at 2pm; Dec 24 at 1pm and 5pm; Dec 26 at 2pm and 6pm; Dec 27 and 28 at 1pm and 5pm; Dec 29 and 30 at 2pm and 6pm; Dec 31 at 2pm; Jan 2 at 2pm and 6pm and Jan 3 at 2pm.
Box office: 01262) 678258