Dereham Operatic Society
Hansel & Gretel
Director - Tony George
Musical Director - Charlie Caine
Dance Instructor - Rebecca Crossley
30th December 2006 to 6th January 2007
at Dereham Memorial Hall.
THE FOREST FAIRY - Julie Hewitt
ATTROCIA THE WITCH - Jill Jarman
KARL - Charlotte Buckingham
DAME DO-GOOD - Tony Wilds
SIR RUPERT DE ROTTWILER - John McInnes
LUCY LOCKETT - Jodie Quirke
HANSEL - Matthew Buckingham
GRETEL - Rachael Bird
POTZ - Nick King
PANZ - Lavinia Pirret
DICKIE DYMWIT - Nick Bird
MELINDRA - Joan Syrett
RODERIGO - Gareth Evans
VILLAGER 1 - Jackie Buckingham
VILLAGER 2 - Kevin Reeve
Chloe Bailey, Helen Bailey, Martha Bailey, Jackie Buckingham, Ashley Cashfield, Amy Cuenca, Ron Eaglen, Gareth Evans, Dave Filer, Chloe Hunt, Nicola McErleane, Stuart McKinnell, Laura Pirret, Kevin Reeve, Ellen Robinson, Kerry Willis
Paige Browne, Eleanor Buckingham, Aleisje Coxon, Natalie Fletcher, Vicky Grafton, Sarah Simpson
Review - by Ian Clarke:
"Take a sprinkling of sparkling new young talent. Add a healthy spoonful of better-than-ever stage stalwarts.
Mis in the well-loved terrible jokes, some slapstick cooking, magical dance routines, heart-warming romance, boos and hisses at the baddies and a happy ending - and the result?
The perfect recipe for a mouth-watering panto which was a tasy as all the delicious delights on the gingerbread cottage which the wandering brother and sister find in the forest.
With such stunning young performers in their midst, the future for the long-established Dereham Operatic Society is as bright as Dame Do-Good's amazing costumes.
Eleven-year-olds Matthew Buckingham and Rachael Bird give faultless performances as Hansel and Gretel and their confidence and maturity defied their young years.
Charlotte Buckingham, 19 (principle boy, young forester Karl), and Jodie Quirke, 14, (kitchen maid Lucy Lockett), were enchanting and their Born Again duet was spellbinding.
While that quartet and the young dancers and singers are still in the infancy of their acting careers, the likes of Tony Wilds (Dame), Nick Bird (laugh-a-minute Dickie Dimwitt) and John McInnes (mean old mayor), have been treading the boards for more years than they probably care to mention.
But their energy, enthusiasm, skills and ability to interact with the audience remain amazing.
There were so many extra touches which added to the enjoyment - the Gingerbread men's dance, Julie Hewitt's (Forest Fairy) little giggle after she spoke and the sheer range of variety on show. Mention must go to director Tony George, musical director Charlie Caine and choreographer Rebecca Crossley for cooking up such a delicious post-Christmas treat.
I spoke to several people who had not experienced Dereham panto before - and one thought it was better than the big-budget show in Norwich.
I'm sure they'll all be back next year."