The Haymarket and The Anvil, Basingstoke
Performances are at The Haymarket unless another location is given.
Steaming, 19th to 22nd June, 19:30 and 14:00 on Thursday and Saturday at The Haymarket
By Nell Dunn. We are plunged into the hot and intimate world of an all-female steam room in London's East End. We are privy to the thoughts, dreams, lives and loves of six women who find sanctuary there and ultimately unite in the fight to keep open their little bit of heaven when the baths are threatened with closure. Containing adult themes, nudity and some adult language, Steaming offers a hilarious girls' night of feminine wisdom, secrets and intimate thoughts in which six very different women expose themselves on every level to their closest friends.
Tiddler And Other Terrific Tales, 28th to 29th June, 14:00 and 11:00 on Saturday at The Haymarket
Under the sea, out on the farm and into the jungle, these terrific tales are woven together with live music, puppetry and a whole host of colourful characters from their best-loved titles: Tiddler, Monkey Puzzle, The Smartest Giant in Town and A Squash and a Squeeze. Funky moves, toe tapping tunes and giggles are guaranteed! Is Tiddler telling the truth? Will Monkey find his Mummy? Will George The Giant make lots of friends? Can the old lady really squash and squeeze all those animals in? The perfect treat for kids 3+ and their families and friends!
The Ragged Child, 10th to 11th July, 19:30 at The Haymarket
The new Basingstoke Youth Theatre in association with Proteus Theatre Company, Central Studio and Anvil Arts present over 30 talented local young people in a stark and moving account of child deprivation in London in the 1850s especially commissioned for the Basingstoke Festival 2013. The Ragged Child follows the plight of the poor and destitute, mirrored throughout in its characters’ tragic lives. The fight for education of the ignorant and illiterate poor in the House of Lords and based on an important chapter in social history, this show is a musical full of drama and song.
Room on the Broom, 30th August to 1st September, daytimes at The Haymarket
A spellbinding adventure from the creators of The Gruffalo! The witch and her cat are flying happily along on their broomstick when a stormy wind blows the witch’s hat, bow and wand away into the night. With the help of a daft dog, a beautiful bird and a friendly frog, her belongings are retrieved. But this broomstick’s not meant for five and – CRACK! - it snaps in two! When a hungry dragon appears, who will save the poor witch? And will there ever be room on the broom for everyone? A magical, musical delight for children aged 3+.
Reviews of Snow White
13th December 2012 to 6th January 2013.
Review from the Newbury Weekly News.
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, at The Anvil, Basingstoke, until January 6
This was a glittering pantomime with a full quota of slightly off-centre jokes, two comedians - Ian Good as the nurse Dotty Dettoll and Noel Brodie as Muddles - Sarah Louise Day as Snow White, Luke Roberts the Prince, (avoiding convention somewhat) and seven lively actors camping it up as dwarfs.
The Basingstoke and North Hampshire dance academies provided the young dancers, well-choreographed by Sarah Louise Day, who also had to function as the main character, doing well in both capacities.
There was lots of glitter and colour, plenty of topical pop songs and references. The storyline, thin at the best of times, may not have been worked up as well as it might - maybe as director Ian Good had a major acting part to concern him besides the production, and writer Andrew Ryan's script was fairly lightweight. Even so, it all worked well in the end, owing in no small part to Wicked Queen Lucy Benjamin hamming it up mercilessly and creating a huge response from the small children whenever she appeared.
"Snow White's dead," she screamed at the mirror, "I've seen to that." "No she's not, you silly old bat," replied the mirror. (She actually had one little tot crying at the thought of killing Snow White and the nurse had to reassure her it hadn't happened.)
The songs from the Disney film were all given a new lease of life and went down well with the audience. Jokes about Reading and poor old Tadley were interspersed with comic routines and, overall, this production can be recommended to families with four to nine-year-olds, especially. A trio provided the music and timed a sequence with three tots pretending to play their instruments very well.
Then there were the jokes of course, oh yes there were. "Boots don't sell boots, Selfridges don't sell fridges and the Virgin Megastore was a huge disappointment..." Well you don't expect a major improvement in panto jokes any time soon do you?
There are reviews in the Daily Echo ("everything you would expect from a top-class pantomime all packed in to bursting point... even the grouchiest of Ebenezer Scrooges won’t be able to resist standing up and joining in by the end of this pantomime"), The Stage ("excellently staged and very traditional pantomime that has all the ingredients we love and expect... triumphant success"), the Basingstoke Gazette ("all of the principals give great vocal performances... the drama of the moment where Snow White is about to take the fatal bite never diminishes and such is its power that one little girl near me was even reduced to tears. She, and the rest of the children, were, consequently, all more than delighted by the required happy ending").
For more details
See The Anvil and Haymarket web site at www.anvilarts.org.uk.
Reviews of previous productions
See the Archive for these reviews:
Charlie and Lola's Best Bestest Play (December 2012). There is a review in the Basingstoke Gazette ("fun, not silly, sophisticated, yet simple, and contains a bounty of incident for children to enjoy and digest").
Peter Pan (December 2011)
Beauty and the Beast (December 2011)
The Wind in the Willows (December 2010)
Sleeping Beauty (December 2010)
Cinderella (December 2009)
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (December 2009)
Aladdin (December 2008)
A Christmas Carol (December 2008)
The Wizard of Oz (December 2007)
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (December 2007)
The Borrowers (December 2006)
Private Lives (July 2006)
Whatever Happened to Bette and Joan? (February 2006)
The Wind in the Willows (December 2005)
The Canterville Ghost (December 2004)
The Playboy of the Western World (September 2004)
Thérèrse Raquin (January 2004)
The Three Musketeers (December 2003)
Mack and Mabel (November 2003)
Tartuffe (October 2003)
April in Paris (September 2003)
Perfect Pitch (June 2003)
The Daughter-in-Law (April 2003)
East (March 2003)
Relatively Speaking (March 2003)
Othello (February 2003)
Alice the Musical (December 2002)
Ghosts (April 2002)
Pickwick The Musical (December 2001)
The Sound of Music (November 2001)