Jack and the Beanstalk is a panto classic that most adults will have already of seen at least once in their lives. But this year’s Panto at Queen’s Theatre has a twist on the traditional tale of beans and giants, with the inclusion of a carnival where Jack Trott (James William-Pattison) and his mother run the ice cream stall and all of the milk being provided by their beloved cow Pat (Claire Greenway).
Dame Dotty Trott (John Barr) and Jack are forced to sell Pat as they need the money to pay the Giant’s henchman Hurricane (Taylor Rettke) and it’s only when Jack is tricked in accepting a sack of beans, instead of a sack of gold, that the real adventure begins
Jack and the Beanstalk is traditional slapstick and lots of jokes aimed exclusively at people who know Havering and the surrounding areas. The audience is bombarded by jokes by Dotty who will often have the parents in stitches, which the physical humor will keep the children entertained. But some of my favorite parts of the night weren’t exactly in the script, including a section where Dotty’s wig and mic flew off and comments improvised by carnival owner Frank Furter (Richard Emerson) as all the actors messed up the ice cream scene.
Unlike most pantos all of the actors also play instruments as well as sing throughout the show and they introduce a lot of pop hits from across the decades. These include This is Me (The Greatest Showman), Great Balls of Fire (Jerry Lee Lewis), 9 to 5 (Dolly Parton), Reach For The Stars (SClub7), One Way or Another (Blondie), Baby Shark (Pink Fong) and many more hits that will have you singing along to the show as well as sitting back and enjoying the music.
The whole night is full of fun and both I and my 6-year-old daughter were giggling all the way through it, The Queen’s Theatre has done it again.