Review The Pantomime Adventures of Peter Pan at Manchester Opera House 2022
The big panto is back in Manchester as The Pantomime Adventures of Peter Pan has flown onto the Manchester Opera House stage 2022. Check out what we thought in our review.
Running until 31st December 2022, the Manchester Panto stars Jason Manford, Ben Nickless. Jesica Croll, Samara Castello, Ross Carpenter and The Acromaniacs.
We were invited along to check out The Pantomime Adventures of Peter Pan at their press night and you can discover what we thought below.
Review The Pantomime Adventures of Peter Pan Manchester Opera House 2022
We have been going to the Manchester Panto’s at the Opera House since the children were little and it has become one of our family’s highlights of the run-up to Christmas.
I was therefore excited to be invited back to check out this year’s Panto, The Pantomime Adventures of Peter Pan and took along my 10-year-old little girl for a mother-and-daughter night out.
The show is set after the Peter Pan story that we all love and know.
When the Neverland Pixie Dust waterfall starts to run out of Pixie Dust meaning Peter Pan can no longer fly, he calls upon his old friend Wendy to try to help. However, Captain Hook who it turns out managed to escape from the Croc, has other plans.
He tries to enlist his old friend Smee in his evil plan, but unbeknown to Hook, Smee’s loyalties now lie elsewhere.
Jason Manford plays the evil Captain Hook and is the big star panto name this year.
Arriving on stage with his motley crew, it was instantly apparent that he was made to play Hook. Not only did he look the part but had the stage presence of this infamous villain.
However, within minutes he had broken character, his Salford accent returned and the audience was treated to a mini version of his standup act. It should be no surprise that this was well-received and truly hilarious.
Before long we were back into the show where Manford showed that he could not only deliver a punch line but also hold a tune, with his rendition of Cry Me A River a highlight.
The jokes also continued as he joined forces with Manchester panto favourite Ben Nickless as Smee.
Having seen Ben Nickless in previous Manchester pantos, I had high expectations and am glad to say he did not disappoint.
Performing with a comedy legend such as Manford it would be easy to be overshadowed but this certainly was not the case.
Within minutes of appearing on the stage, he had everyone in stitches. His abundance of impressions set to This Is Me and his 2022 slightly political rap had everyone laughing out loud.
In fact, the pair made a perfect comedy duo and I am confident in proclaiming that it was one of the funniest stage shows I have ever seen.
They had great comedy timing and instantly built a rapport with the audience. The mermaid scene is one that I and my eyes will not quickly be forgetting.
They offer just the correct level of cheeky jokes which had my 10-year-old daughter chuckling mixed with fun double entendres that left my daughter confused as to why all the adults were gleefully sniggering – just as it should be.
Of course a Peter Pan story does not come together with Hook and Smee alone.
Jessical Croll as Wendy and Samara Casteallo as Tink, brought the right amount of sass and gumption that the characters deserved. Whilst Ross Carpenter played a great Peter Pan.
The Acromaniacs as The Lost Boys also deserves a mention. A group of international gymnasts and tumblers, they wowed showing off their acrobatic skills which would give any circus act a run for their money.
As we have come to expect from the big Manchester shows, no panto magic had been spared. Expect great costumes, amazing sets, cast members flying through the air and a huge crocodile which comes out into the audience (who might be a tad scary for younger kids)
The show of course had all the elements that you would expect from a panto, with an abundance of ‘boos’, ‘oh no he isn’t’, super soakers and lots of audience interaction, including an audience cam!
It was great to see the Panto staple of the adapted “Twelve Days of Christmas” song made an appearance.
It had the whole audience laughing out loud especially when everything seemed to go wrong. Whether Manford ‘accidentally’ or intentionally threw the toilet rolls into the audience or not, it was very funny to watch.
The show ended with Jason Manford’s charity song Assembly Belters where everyone was invited to stand and join in – you will remember more of the words than you would think – have a sneak peek in our Instagram Reels here.
In the current climate, a night of panto basics, and good old-fashioned humour was just what was needed.
I was in hysterics throughout and my ten-year-old daughter loved the slapstick and toilet humour along with the amazing dancers especially when they came out into the audience.
If you are looking for a night of fun and laughter this Christmas season The Pantomime Adventures of Peter Pan at the Manchester Opera House will make the perfect festive treat.
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