MUSIC Theatre 2000, in association with Showtime Productions, promoted their show as a traditional family pantomime and that is exactly what they delivered. It was fun and laughter all the way.

The familiar story of Aladdin allowed for plenty of audience interaction with young voices filling the theatre with loud booing of the villain and ecstatic cheering for the hero. The children reserved special cheers for Nobby (Sophie Collins), the giant panda. A fine cast of singing actors, supported by energetic dancers and a live band, provided an ideal appetiser to the Christmas festivities. The production was enhanced through its special effects and scenic projections.

The show had all the traditional pantomime elements and, for some of us with nostalgic Music Hall memories, the working in of the famous sand dance was an added pleasure. Equally enjoyable were the laundry antics and their own frantic version of The 12 Days of Christmas.

Ollie Wray, a young Michael Ball look-a-like, made for a dashing hero whilst Tony Bright added sauciness to the outrageous costumes of his Dame. Comedy was provided by the hyperactive hilarity of Nathan Potter, who was also responsible for some excellent choreography. For sheer villainy, Louis Craig could not be bettered.