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2006 - Christmas Show....

 

ROBIN THE HOOD

“Robin the Hood”

 Blakeney Players – Blakeney Village Hall

 As the band struck up the traditional “Robin Hood” theme tune the audience at Blakeney Village Hall could have been forgiven for thinking they were about to see a traditional pantomime but a closer reading of the title should have forewarned them that something different was in store.

 “Robin the Hood” is a product of the fertile mind and imaginative pen of Blakeney stalwart, Peter Franklin, and after the impressive opening sequence set in New York the two hoods, Harry the Horse (Franklin) and Drums Capello (Dave Long) are transported back in time, via the Tardis, to 1143 – almost a quarter to twelve – and Sherwood Forest where Harry’s American girl friend, Marie (Barbara Franklin) has become Marian.

 Tradition does start to take over as King Richard and the Earl of Huntingdon go off to the crusades and the foresters are left to battle with the evil Sheriff de Lacey ( a wonderful dead pan performance from Ralph Wiggins) and Prince John. All the usual suspects are in the forest, where Martyn Scott gives a splendid over the top performance as Little John and Steve Benson has the opportunity to show that he has a tremendous singing voice in the role of Friar Tuck.

 There are two especially good cameo performances from Gail Woodhouse as the keeper of the Sheriff’s castle and Sue Andrews, aided by some terrific make-up,  as the soothsayer Hortense while, as usual there are a number of excellently choreographed routines featuring the whole company.

 It is no surprise that the two hoods join the foresters as they unite against the sheriff to free the captured Marian with Harry being given the name of Robin – because that is what he does. The show ends on another big number with a cast of 26 on stage and almost as many employed on equally important back stage duties.

 The show was terrific fun for a capacity audience with the first night takings going towards  the Blakeney School mini bus appeal. The Tardis, under the direction of the good doctor, takes off again at 8 p.m. tonight (Thursday) with three more shows on Saturday, Sunday afternoon and next Thursday.

 Martin Braybrook