Giant panto fun for all in Geraldton
REVIEW: Jack and the Beanstalk, Theatre 8, Geraldton
Growing up in England, going to see the pantomime was a regular post-Christmas treat.
Relaxing after double helpings of turkey and trifle to the cries of “he’s behind you” and “oh no, he isn’t!” was a regular event. So it seemed rather fitting that Theatre 8’s panto, Jack and the Beanstalk, is being performed in Geraldton’s coldest period of the year.
Fans of traditional pantomime or just fans of family plays will love Theatre 8’s second production of 2019.
From the opening scene, where we see our two fairy narrators set up the story of Jack and his family’s money woes, to the introduction of the giant — played skilfully by Lachlan Anderson, who also produced and directed the play — Jack and the Beanstalk ticks all the boxes for a fun, family-friendly experience.
The cast and crew are a mixture of old Theatre 8 hands and a few new to the Geraldton amateur theatre group.
All give solid performances with a few notable stand-outs.
Joanne Franklin is simply awesome as Poison Ivy the evil witch, drawing the audience in with her over-the-top cackle and attempts to wind up the audience.
The production is very much an interactive experience, managed skilfully by Rob Offer who plays Dozy Den, the ‘village idiot’.
Offer manages to weave in plenty of pop culture references that will entertain both the young and older members of the crowd.
Director Lachlan Anderson has produced Jack and the Beanstalk previously and recommends this play to all the family.
“It’s a theatre experience you don’t want to miss,” he said.
“You will leave the show feeling like you just had an amazing adventure with Jack and all his friends.”
Anderson has been a member of Theatre 8 for four years and has appeared in six plays.
“It’s been enjoyable directing the cast,” he said.
“They have all taken on their roles with lots of enthusiasm. It’s been great to see them all grow into their characters, especially those who ended up with characters they didn’t expect, such as our good fairy.”
Jack and the Beanstalk runs August 16-18, 23-25 and 30-31 and September 1.
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