CINDERELLA: A WICKED MOTHER OF A NIGHT OUT
Combining panto with the trip to the pub after, a site-specific Cinderella offers a first-rate night out for theatre fans and newcomers alike
A review by Tanya Howard
Written by Luke Barnes and directed by Jimmy Fairhhurst, Cinderella: A Wicked Mother of a Night Out has been the absolute highlight of the Christmas season for me. A night out filled with theatre, live music, mass singing, karaoke including both the cast and the audience, all in the comfort of a pub where you could grab a drink throughout the performance. What more could a girl want!
The story, loosely based on Cinderella, focuses on the fate of Cinderella and her dog Buttons, who has become extremely suicidal following the death of Cinderella’s Dad Dave. Dave was a legend in the community and always held an annual Christmas karaoke night, which is now being hosted by her cruel Stepmother Judy Garland and stepsisters, Simone and Garfunkel.
We were welcomed into the pub by Naomi McDonald and Louise Haggerty, who were playing the stepsisters, and throughout the show we were in hysterics at their characters, relentlessly flirting and bitching with the audience. I went with my friend Charli and we couldn’t get over how much the sisters characters reminded us of ourselves in Magaluf circa 2015, we even had the same hairstyles and similar outfits. They were the stand outs of the night for us!
Instead of the classic fairy godmother, Cinderella had Mike, played by Jack Brown, who was rocking a silver slinky mini dress. A large, hairy bloke who refuses to justify his outfit keeps the crowd upbeat and entertained, keeping the show together. Prince Charming, named after Prince the singer of course, had an East End Danny Dyer swagger and was a self-proclaimed fuck boy who wants himself a bit of Cinderella, and was played by Jack Condon.
Cinderella, played by Gemma Barnett, was brought into the 21st century with her working in the pub her Dad run and her sisters banning her from coming to the annual party as she was being rude to them. Instead of the classic glass slippers she wears a pair of orthopaedic slippers that an old lady, who was an old regular, left in the pub. When Prince realises they were his Nans, who just passed away, he proposes but Cinders tells him to bugger off (although a lot more colourful) because who actually marries someone they’ve just met because a pair of shoes fit.
The show opened with a full cast, full length performance of Bohemian Rhapsody, with new lyrics, and karaoke numbers throughout the night included Dizzie Rascal’s Dance Wiv Me and Christmas numbers like Rocking Around the Christmas Tree. The atmosphere and energy was on top form throughout the night and the audience was in hysterics for a good portion of the show. As if the whole show wasn’t good enough by itself they invited the audience to stay for a karaoke after party, and I am happy to report my name was put down multiple times.
Sadly, the show is on a very short run, it only showed in London for three nights, although I’m really hoping they come back on a longer run as I would have happily come back and watched it over and over. We actually checked tickets at the end of the night but were busy across the available dates left. I would highly recommend keeping an eye out if they bring the show back next year, or any other shows from Luke and Not Too Tame, especially if you are up for having your face licked by Button’s the Dog. What a show, what a night!