Skip to main content

The Amazing Adventures of Aladdin and the Magic Lamp

Cumbernauld Theatre
Four stars
“Don't go messing with cosmos,” says the operator of a celestial
helpline to big bad Abanazer in Tony Cownie's pocket-sized take on this
most magical of pantomime favourites, “or the cosmos will mess with
you.” This is something Abanazer eventually learns to his cost  as he
manipulates peasant boy Aladdin into leading him to the magic lamp and
the genie that will sate his greed. Lovestruck Aladdin, meanwhile, has
his sights set on the beautiful Princess Jasmine, even if it means
trampolining his way over the palace walls with his best pal Karif to
get her.

A bored king is the initial impetus for the yarn to unravel, as his
loyal subjects scramble around in desperation to find one more story to
keep him interested. Only when the oldest and wisest member of the
tribe lays bare a tale closer to his heart than he lets on does the
gang leap into the dressing up box to act it out. As dramaturged by Ed
Robson and Roderick Stewart, this makes the most of a small is
beautiful aesthetic, with just five actors performing an array of roles.

These range from James Anthony Pearson's dashing Aladdin and Jayd
Johnson's Jasmine to Steven McNicoll's wicked Abanazar. Laughs are
provided by Nicky Elliot, who doubles up as Karif and Jasmine's fashion
victim father, while Angela Darcy flits between a gallus window
cleaning Twanky
and the wee genie who is finally freed from her lamp. All of this keeps
a young audience in fine voice, while a touching epilogue hints that
Aladdin's life might not have been such a fairytale after all.

The Herald, December 8th 2014


ends

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Art School Dance Goes On Forever – Snapshots Of Masters Of The Multiverse

Intro – Snapshots – Deaf School

1

In 1980, the same year as the Manchester band, Magazine, released a 7
inch single called A Song From Under The Floorboards – a three verse
and chorus distillation of Dostoyevsky's novel, Notes From Underground
– an art school scandal occurred.

This scandal took place in Liverpool, and was based around a project
called the Furbelows, although it became better known in the Liverpool
Echo and other organs that reported it as the Woolly Nudes.

The Furbelows, or Woolly Nudes, were a group of artists who had come
out of Liverpool College of Art, who, dressed in grotesque woolly
costumes which featured knitted approximations of male and female
genitalia, made assorted public interventions around the city centre as
kind of living sculptures acting out assorted narratives.

The Furbelows project had been funded by what was then Merseyside Arts
Association, and, after the participants were arrested and taken to
court on obscenity charges after what…

Peter Brook – The Prisoner

Peter Brook is no stranger to Scotland, ever since the guru of European and world theatre first brought his nine-hour epic, The Mahabharata, to Glasgow in 1988. That was at the city’s old transport museum, which by 1990 had become Tramway, the still-functioning permanent venue that opened up Glasgow and Scotland as a major channel for international theatre in a way that had previously only been on offer at Edinburgh International Festival.
Brook and his Paris-based Theatre des Bouffes du Nord company’s relationship with Tramway saw him bring his productions of La Tragedie de Carmen, La Tempete, Pellease et Mellisande, The Man Who…, and Oh Les Beaux Jours – the French version of Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days – to Glasgow.
Thirty years on from The Mahabharata, Brook comes to EIF with another piece of pan-global theatre as part of a residency by Theatre des Bouffes du Nord, which Brook has led since he decamped to Paris from London in the early 1970s. The current Edinburgh residency has alr…

Romeo And Juliet - Shakespeare's Globe Comes to Glasgow

Open-air Shakepeares are a summer-time perennial of the theatre calendar, attracting picnicking audiences as much as midges. More often than not, such romps through the grass are frothy, heritage industry affairs designed to be accompanied by strawberries and cream and not to be taken too seriously. Shakespeare’s Globe theatre company look set to change such perceptions when they open their outdoor tour of Romeo And Juliet in Glasgow next week as part of the West End festival.

For the two young actors taking the title roles of the doomed lovers, it will also be something of a homecoming. Richard Madden and Ellie Piercy both studied in Glasgow prior to turning professional. Indeed, Madden has yet to graduate from the acting course at RSAMD, and, as well as facing the pressures of playing such a meaty role in close proximity to the audience, will have the added anxiety of being assessed and graded by his tutors.

“This is the end of my third year,” says Madden following a Saturday mornin…