WHEN it comes to the annual King’s panto, there’s a few things Edinburgh folk like to know in advance.
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King’s Theatre, Leven Street
Is it worth the money? Will Messrs Stewart, Gray and Stott be on form? And, will both kids and adults alike get plenty out of it?
The answer to all those questions is a resounding yes. Oh, yes, it is!
Bigger, brighter and funnier than ever before, everyone behind this big-budget production has pushed the boat out to ensure maximum entertainment for all.
From radge dwarfs whose hilarious lines sounded like they’d been scripted by Irvine Welsh, to deliciously colourful dance-music routines that had everything bar the Disney logo, even the Bay City Rollers’ Shang-A-Lang received an airing as well as a hilarious appearance by Super (Nicola) Sturgeon and Super (Alex) Salmond.
Visually, the famous mirror on the wall is now about the same size as the Cameo cinema’s Screen 2, and comes complete with impressive CGI.
The reindeer-led sleigh flying high across the theatre a genuine wow moment.
And as for the Tyrannosaurus Rex dinosaur who showed up to pay us all a visit... well, let’s just say no amount of written words can do the actual experience a justice.
Andy Gray (Hector), meanwhile, remains a comedy genius. So comfortable is Gray, he walks onto the stage as if walking into his own house. With long-standing panto Dame, Allan Stewart (Nurse May), beside him, the more (unintentional) things go wrong for the pair, the funnier things get.
Add Stott’s wonderfully garish Wicked Queen to the mix and you’ve got the Holy Trinity of the panto world.
No wonder Stewart said (tongue-in-cheek) they’d record the audience’s laughter and send it to other pantos.
Then, just when you think it’s all over, all three return (alongside Greg Barrowman’s Prince Hamish) for an alternative, seat-wetting rendition of The Twelve Days Of Christmas.
Proving that when it comes to chemistry, ideas and laughs, The King’s panto really is miles better than all the others.
Until 17 January 2016