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We have a number of reviews from the Daily Echo of which we are very proud to show you.


REVIEW: Puss in Boots, Dalian Players, Woolston Methodist Hall

By Anne Waggott

DAME Baguette is in a quandary: she has five hundred rolls to make for the King’s banquet, but her son, Rollo, has been distracted en route to collect the necessary flour by the appearance of the King’s granddaughter, Aurora.


However, failed evil magician Baron Blackheart has also noticed the fair Aurora, and plans to make her his bride.

Michael Tosdevin commanded the stage as conniving villain Blackheart, while Robert Franks (Big Bob) showed a natural comic aptitude and Phil Jordan (Dame) grew into a flirty role. The quintet of inept bakers had a very good rapport together (particularly mixing dough in a well-timed slapstick episode!) and all had great comic moments.

In this originally-scripted, community theatre pantomime, what was lacking at times in pace and energy it gained with aesthetic appeal (colourful costumes and beautifully painted scenery), visual humour, good diction and choreography, and winning smiles from the dancers.

REVIEW: , The Pied Piper, Dalian Players, Woolston Methodist Hall

8th January 2003

The Pied Piper, Dalian Players with the Roynon Dancers, Methodist Church Hall, Woolston


Woolston becomes the infamous Hamelin Town this week as the Pied Piper charms residents in traditional panto-style.

This unusual story choice is expertly updated from a 1950's script by Michael Tosdevin.

Michael adds playing the "baddie" to his talents, in the shape of the Mayor, who when the town has been cleared of rats, refuses to pay the reward.

Production is from Terry Gates (King Rat) who also creates the imaginative sets.

The audience enthusiasm is a tribute to the ad lib talents of the entire cast, especially when things didn't quite go right.

Rhea Bawden plays an elegant, confident piper and her "Raindrops on Roses" in which she leads the singing with Anna (Amy Carter) is a delight. The engaging younger members play children, rats and woodland creatures with several quick costume changes

REVIEW: And Then there were None, Dalian Players, Woolston Methodist Hall


By Ham Quentin (COR)

AGATHA Christie's venerable thriller gets a modest but effective staging, as a group of suspects and victims are polished off one by one with varying degrees of plausibility while the audience gets steadily more enthused and amused by the horrid absurdity.

While Mollie Prince as Vera Claythorne makes a likeable heroine with a blood curdling line in screams, Robert Franks proves extremely able as Philip Lombard, delivering his lines with just the right balance of wit and sinister edge.

Other Franks involved include Michael, who gives us the night's most impressive death, Martin, with an energetic performance as the increasingly panic stricken William Blore, Dan and Andy, who supply unobtrusive but mostly successful lighting and sound effects, and Sandra, who acts as Producer and, we suspect, Director.

Louise Mason and Chris Walker made a nice couple as the Rogers, Norma Mackey as the gloomy Emily Brent had a beautifully enunciated delivery, Phil Jordan as General MacKenzie developed a suitably haunted air, and Michael Tosdevin's Judge Wargrave and Nick Barrett's Dr Armstrong kept us guessing.


REVIEW: Red Ridding Hood, Dalian Players, Woolston Methodist Hall

By Karen Robson

Whilst the panto might be named Red Riding Hood, this was definitely a story of many strands with a surprise birthday party for Granny Smith planning a much more significant part in the action and the excuse to introduce and let us enjoy the company of an array of characters.

Writer Andy Franks has produced a sharply scripted and nimbly paced show that revelled in encouraging audience participation. The cast were clearly have a wonderful time and were adept at dealing with the interaction from an overexcited and vocal audience. Rob Franks was great fun as the Big Bad Wolf, whilst Phil Jordan made a splendid Dame Treacle.

Produced in conjunction with Fitzell Roberts School of Dance, this was a show with beautifully choreographed and performed dance numbers: there was a woodland scene that would not have been out of place in a ballet.

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