Drama: Alice In Wonderland Junior Production Review
The Junior Production this year was an adaptation of Lewis Carroll's classic novel 'Alice in Wonderland' and the whole show was a real treat.
Arriving on the lawn to a hubbub of 'Wonderlanders' set the tone perfectly, the atmosphere of playfulness and mischievousness hinted at what was to come.
Having been treated to the carnival atmosphere, we were then lead by Tara Agudo's fearsome Queen of Hearts into 'Wonderland' where we were then serenaded by Rosa Witts and Scarlette Giles who were superb and I don't think ever left the stage.
Lily Potter, who played Alice, was truly excellent; throughout the play we saw her transition from slightly confused and timid into a Queen defying, confident girl.
For such a young actress to display such a journey was impressive and promises much for the future. She had a real stage presence and an admirable sense of calm amidst the chaos of Wonderland, and this grew and grew throughout the play.
Phil Muwambi's Caterpillar was, meanwhile, simply hilarious. From being wheeled on, to his onstage charisma, throughout his performance I couldn't help but smile. This, as well as Jay Adebisi's mercurial Cheshire Cat were two performances that really shone, which is remarkable considering the strength of the whole cast.
Ruby Moody's grotesque Duchess and Douglas Bichan and Charlie Belton's Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee were also a delight to watch, with their performances capturing both the attention of the room and the imaginations of the audience.
Theo Morse and Louis Muston, who played the Mad Hatter and the March Hare respectively, must also be commended for their complete and utter commitment to their roles. Wonderland was an immersive experience with no 'off-stage' as such, and these two (like so many others) held their characters superbly throughout.
I found myself invariably chuckling at the Hatter and the Hare's anecdotes - they were both fantastically barmy and bonkers, perhaps parts that would be quite easy to overdo. These two found a real balance and subtlety however, which made their madness all the more enjoyable.
Despite singling these handful of performances out, the ensemble as a whole were all fantastic, with just too many names to list. I would only say this: the cast should be immensely proud of themselves and what they have achieved.
As I was looking around the marquee, every face was abeam, and this reaction alone should leave the whole cast feeling satisfied at a job well done. The hard work and commitment was clear and the execution was a pleasure to witness.
I can think of very few better ways to spend a sunny evening watching young actors honing their craft in such an entertaining and charming way, and I must congratulate every one of them on what was really a wonderful experience.
I sincerely hope that this is just the first of many stunning performances from this group of immensely talented dramatists.