Review of Ballet Cymru's Little Red Riding Hood & Three Little Pigs

PUBLISHED: 20:45 31 October 2012

Little Red Riding Hood, Emily Pimm Edwards [Picture: John Bishop]

Little Red Riding Hood, Emily Pimm Edwards [Picture: John Bishop]

© John Bishop 2012

BALLET Cymru's Little Red Riding Hood & Three Little Pigs at the Hawthorne Theatre, in Welwyn Garden City, left Codicote comedian, writer and playwright Johnny Tait spellbound.

Sam Bishop, centre, holding Emily, and Lydia Arnoux, the blond girl seen in her non-piggy role second from right [Picture: John Bishop]Sam Bishop, centre, holding Emily, and Lydia Arnoux, the blond girl seen in her non-piggy role second from right [Picture: John Bishop]

THERE is no way a barrow boy from the Elephant and Castle would ever go to see a ballet.

I mean ballet is for posh people, you know the type, they talk like they have got a thousand plums in their mouth. And even then only old people go to the ballet, it’s not for anyone under 65, oh no. If you think that is the case, you could not be further wrong.

This ex-barrow boy went along to see the ballet version of Little Red Riding Hood and The Three Little Pigs and thoroughly enjoyed every moment of it.

You know the feeling – you are watching a show, and all of a sudden you think, it’s not finished already has it? I was enjoying that.

The Hawthorne Theatre has been attracting first-class productions from companies all over the UK and abroad, and this time it was Ballet Cymru that provided us with an adaptation of the Roald Dahl tales.

The backbone of the show was the excellent composition from Paul Patterson, played by the Welsh Session Orchestra, add to the mix the creativity of artistic director Darius James, throw in a set that was basic but extremely effective and pleasing to the eye, clever use of lighting, and, of course, an extremely talented cast, and we have first-class entertain-ment for the whole family.

The entire cast performed with a warmth and enthusiasm that kept the audience engrossed throughout. Hats off to Sam Bishop who performed his role as narrator while dancing with uncanny ease and expertise.

As a director and a producer myself, I would worry about asking a young lady to take on the role of a pig in case she took offence, due to the perception people have to the meaning of the term pig.

But my heart was won over by a pig played by the shortest member of the cast, Lydia Arnoux, who had a smile that would brighten up even the dullest party political broadcast. I don’t think I will ever eat bacon again!

It was an absolute joy to see newlywed Emily Pimm Edwards take on the role of Little Red Riding Hood.

Having seen the way Emily brought the character to life it is not surprising to hear that she has landed leading roles in other productions, including Juliet in Romeo and Juliet.

I am now looking forward to the return of the Vienna Festival Ballet company on November 11 performing Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker and hope that Ballet Cymru are asked to pirouette back to Hawthorne Theatre in the future.

Review by Johnny Tait

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