A comedy of errors for all ages

Peter Pan flies on stage.
Peter Pan flies on stage.

REVIEW: Peter Pan Goes Wrong, Mischief Theatre Company, Theatre Royal Newcastle – Wednesday, July 1, to Saturday, July 4

People may think why would you go to see a play knowing that it goes completely wrong? But that’s the beauty of this play because everything does go wrong, but it’s the going wrong that makes it the original play it is.

A scene from Peter Pan Goes Wrong

A scene from Peter Pan Goes Wrong

Taking place in the grand Newcastle Theatre Royal, Peter Pan Goes Wrong was simply the definition of pure family entertainment.

Originally thinking that the play itself would be mainly for children, I was completely surprised when I saw the whole theatre, including myself, burst into tears of laughter at the comedy of the play that just kept on going, going and going!

The slapstick humour started before the play itself, as stage managers (played by actors) began rallying the crowd with fantastic audience participation.

The main cast performed their jobs of being bad, extremely well, adding to the hilarity.

A scene from Peter Pan Goes Wrong

A scene from Peter Pan Goes Wrong

Leonie Hall, who played Sandra and Wendy Darling, stole the show with her vivid robotic movements and faultless line delivery.

The show is a recreation of the West End hit The Play That Went Wrong, which has attracted knockout ratings from the critics. It’s clear that this touring play will be following in its footsteps.

Peter Pan Goes Wrong features the story of Peter Pan. The actors play actors, playing in Peter Pan. And as you can probably guess by the title, it doesn’t go in the ‘artistic direction’ that the director intended.

I was expecting it to be simply a play and was suprised to find it featured multiple songs which the audience could join in as part of the serious amount of audience participation.

Another reason why the show was such a laugh was due to the obvious amount of hard work that had been put into the set – falling sandbags, wardrobes, pyrotechnics and a rotating stage which sometimes couldn’t stop!

Although one of the play’s main strap lines is ‘this is not a panto,’ some of the aspects are just simply that of a pantomime, to the disgust of Captain Hook and Mr Darling (played by Chris Bean) who was furious at the audience for laughing at the bad guy. Absolutely fantastic!

It’s a show for the whole family, a comedy that would suit young and young-at-heart.

A show that has quite simply been sprinkled with pixie dust.

Peter Pan Goes Wrong runs until Saturday, July 4. Tickets cost £16 to £25 for the stalls; £18 to £25 for the Grand Circle; £16 to £20 for the Upper Circle; £13 to £17 for the Amphiheatre. Book online at www.theatreroyal.co.uk or call the box office on 08448 112121.

CAST: Rosie Abrham, Alex Bartram, Cornelius Booth, Matt Cavendish, Fred Gray, Leonie Hill, Harry Kershaw, Chris Leask, James Marlowe, Laurence Pears and Naomi Sheldon.

DIRECTOR: Adam Meggido