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Cinderella - De Montfort Hall Review

It's Strictly showtime as Pantomime returns to De Montfort Hall with the festive offering of Cinderella.

Imagine Theatre return to the venue and present a huge-scale production full of excellent dance, hilarious jokes and a cast that is fantastic. It's a production of the great fairy tale fun that will enchant all ages.

AJ Pritchard and the Ensemble.

All the key Cinderella elements are here, a wonderful central romantic pairing, great sidekicks, a delighting Dame and 3 delicious villains. Right from the sparkingly beginning we're guided through the story with the help of Fairy Godmother turned Narrator played by Madison Swan and then thrust straight into the show with Cinderella played by Evie Pickerill with a rendition of George Ezra's 'Green Green Grass'.

The first half could maybe be a bit tighter, running at 70 minutes it may lose some of the children's attention at times but there are some great set pieces throughout as we travel from locations such as The Forest of Fleckney or The Village of Wigston on the Wibble. None more so than the barnstorming rendition of 'The Twelve Days of Christmas'.  The second half flies by from the Ball to the big wedding finale.

With a cast featuring AJ and Curtis Pritchard as Prince Charming and Dandini respectively you'd no doubt expect superb dancing and the pair deliver as do the rest of the company. Stuart Rogers's choreography allows for both AJ and Curtis to show their prowess whilst the other company members shine too, particularly the youthful ensemble who are all magnificent movers.

The lavish set design and costumes enchant throughout but the most jaw-dropping moment is the reveal of Cinderella's dress and carriage that will take her to the Prince's ball. The reveal drawing gasps of awe, particularly from the younger members of the audience.

It's wonderful to see the Junior Ensemble return after the pandemic meant they couldn't be a part of the show. It's also great to see audience interaction return with the three people from the audience brought onto the stage to dance. These key elements of pantomime were missed last year so it's having it back really helps the whole feel of Panto.

Jarred Christmas (Buttons), Curtis Pritchard (Dandini), Evie Pickerill (Cinderella), Madison Swan (Fairy Godmother), AJ Pritchard (Prince Charming), Richard J Fletcher (Dame Penny Pockets) and Marcus J Foreman (Ensemble)

The star names here AJ and Curtis Pritchard are perfect fits for Prince Charming and Dandini, their brotherhood allows for ease as they bounce off each other. As above their dancing is the expected high-class but both show their acting chops too. Curtis isn't afraid to be the butt of the joke especially as he's covered in foam during that aforementioned 'The Twelve Days of Christmas'.

Evie Pickerill is a gorgeous Cinderella, she is endlessly likeable (I think my Nephew might have found his first crush). She interacts superbly with all around her including the audience and has a singing voice that could grace the biggest of stages. She is a real standout.

Madison Swan adds another stellar vocal performance as the Fairy Godmother, she is a glittering presence that glows every time she is on the stage. There are some lovely interactions with Evie's Cinderella and proving how kindness can be rewarded. If you wanted a dream Fairy Godmother then Madison might just be it.

Jarred Christmas returns to the venue having appeared last year in Sleeping Beauty and his stand-up roots make him seamlessly fit into the world of Panto, especially as Buttons. His comedic timing is unflappable. Richard J Fletcher has a ball off Dame Penny Pockets and makes for a cracking Dame, matching well in scenes alongside Jarred.

Jacob Kohli is a wickedly nasty Baroness Verruca Wibble. Relishing in the chorus of boos that are thrown at him. Sophie Camble and Millie Robbins take on the step-sisters and it's a refreshing change to see the roles not played in drag. Sophie and Millie clearly have a great bond together and aren't afraid to show a ruthless side in their characters. As step-sisters come the duo are one of the best pairings you'll see. They are 3 tremendous villains.

Cinderella serves up pure magic. Grab your family and friends and get your own invite to the Ball of the year. A sparkling triumph.

Cinderella continues until Monday 2nd January 2023. Tickets are available from

The cast of Cinderella.

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