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Reviewed: Peter Pan Goes Wrong at Curve

When Fantasy Clashes with Reality, "Peter Pan Goes Wrong".

Although there may have been many adaptations of Peter Pan, many of those probably didn’t end with the set falling apart and half the cast in bandages.

In this hilarious comedic twist, Peter Pan Goes Wrong showcases a performance where

everything that can go wrong does.

Produced by Mischief Productions, renowned for their knack for blending slapstick comedy with heartwarming narratives, Peter Pan Goes Wrong is yet another hilarious and heartwarming production that will have your sides splitting with laughter.

The Cornley Youth Theatre are an organisation that takes talented, enthusiastic and/or available children from Upper Cornley Primary School and allows them to experience working with near-professional actors and directors. Their previous

low-budget productions included ‘Jack and the Bean’ and ‘Puss Sometimes in Boots’, in which a real cat played Puss.

This time, the optimistic director Chris Bean (played by Jack Michael Stacey) and Co/Assistant Director Robert (played by Matthew Howell) have secured a much bigger budget this time thanks to the help of one of the cast members Max (played

by Theo Toksvig-Stewart), whose uncle happens to have invested a lot of money into the production.

With the extra expenses, they splash out on the effects and electrics for their traditional production of Peter Pan. However, even before the play begins, things aren’t looking too good. One of the lamps on the set won’t turn on, cast member Lucy (played by Rosemarie Akwafo) tries to run away due to her chronic stage fright, and one of the production staff, Trevor (played by Jake Burgum), manages to break the ‘No photography or mobile phones rule of the Curve. Not to mention the mix-up in the title card, meaning ‘Peter

Pan’ became ‘Peter nap’.

As the play begins, things continue to go wrong, the special effects don’t function properly, sets start to fall apart and props go missing. To make things worse, some of the actors like Annie (played by Jamie Birkett) and Robert have to play multiple

characters due to cast members going missing, meaning a lot of last-minute costume changes).

Even one of the actors Dennis (played by Clark Devlin) can’t remember a single line of his script and has to wear a headset so the crew can tell him the lines.

Things keep going wrong, the flying apparatus starts malfunctioning, sound effect tracks get mixed up and multiple power cuts result in lots of improvisation as the cast desperately tries to keep things going.

Crew members begin to get injured as they struggle through the production. Peter Pan (played by Gareth Tempest) has a nasty fall from the flying apparatus and has to be replaced temporarily, resulting in some awkward script reading, and the narrator Francis (played by Jean-Luke Worrell) has to stall for time while trying to find and improvise with props and missed ques.

Despite this, the crew soldiers on, doing their best to improvise and keep the production going. Even as props go missing and break apart, and certain cast members get knocked out and injured during the performance, the team are quick to improvise their way through to complete the production.

The costumes and set designs were truly amazing, and the revolving stage was also a brilliant addition as a comedy tool as it spins to show various scenes of the backstage characters as they are seen in different hilarious scenarios as they

scramble to gain control of the situation. The use of multiple fast costume changes also added to the comedy, as the characters scramble to change outfits and, even in some cases, accidentally end up in their underwear due to equipment errors.

Sound effects and songs also added to the hilarious production. Wendy’s performance (played by Ciara Morris) of ‘World of Make-believe’ with the rest of the cast was particularly fun to clap along to. The use of music and audio for the sound

effects was also perfectly timed, adding to the awkwardness of the scenes.

A fun and interactive experience for the audience as the actors joked around and included mentions from the audience in the play, giving a sense that the audience was part of the production. It was particularly funny when an audience member asked Hook if he ‘needed a hand’ when he was struggling to open the poison bottle.

The audience especially enjoyed the production, laughing and cheering throughout, and enjoying the hilarious mishaps and improvisations of the crew.

Peter Pan Goes Wrong goes above and beyond to deliver comedy through the use of improvisation and comedic timing and adds a new twist to the classic tale. It’s also impressive the creative ways the cast used to deliver hilarious scenes and engage with the audience.

The use of innuendos, audience interaction and improvisation will have you rolling on the floor with laughter for this production of Peter Pan Goes Wrong!


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