BWW Reviews: PETER PAN GOES WRONG, Birmingham Rep Theatre, January 27 2015
Last April I reviewed The Play That Goes Wrong for BroadwayWorldUK during its UK tour prior to its West End run. I enjoyed it immensely and the reaction to the production is clearly widespread as the production company recouped their investment within the first portion of their stint in London. Peter Pan Goes Wrong is the response to their success and is equally, if not more, hilarious than its predecessor.
This time round, Cornley Polytechnic Society are putting on Peter Pan as their Christmas vignette (not panto!) The set designed by Simon Scullion is essentially a revolve (remarkable for an amateur dramatic society!) which is dressed either side accordingly, involving some very slick scene changes from the crew. The design is one that keeps on giving and there are several occasions when pieces of the set flew off across the stage - I dread to think of the amount of risk assessments that needed doing! The levels of health and safety must also be very high to ensure the wellbeing of the performing company and crew. Matt Haskins' lighting is very good and he strikes the balance of representing an amateur lighter whilst making the production look good on a professional level perfectly. Likewise the same is replicated by Costume Designer Roberto Surace with his work.
The ten-strong cast - many of them from LAMDA again where Mischief Theatre originated - are of the highest calibre and in many ways have to work doubly hard when executing the many events that go wrong throughout the performance. With collapsing sets, flying systems with a mind of their own, a dodgy sound system and injuries aplenty; this is a snapshot of hilarity that ensues throughout. Each performer deserves a mention and a massive pat on the back for their masterclass in organised chaos: Laurence Pears, Cornelius Booth, Matt Cavendish, Leonie Hill, James Marlowe, Chris Leask, Harry Kershaw, Naomi Sheldon, Alex Bartram and Rosie Abraham.
Peter Pan Goes Wrong plays at the Birmingham Rep Theatre until 1 February 2015 and continues to tour the UK until July.