All that, plus an inordinate amount of audience participation and an eclectic mix of traditional and modern songs to be sung, you have Heriot Players’ produciton of Mother Goose.
It’s got everything you could conceivably want in a pantomime ... the obligatory arguments between the players and the audience (oh yes they do); more baddies than you can shake a tin foil-topped stick at; the odd forgotten line (which makes it even funnier) and the sheer energy put into it by a wonderfully supercharged cast.
It’s all tied together by a wonderful piano score performed by Felix Otton, whose tinkles perform the sound effects as well as the backing for the many songs taken on by the cast ... watch out for Felix’s moment in the spotlight as the fourth wall is broken almost beyond repair!
Taking the titular role is Doug Crabbe, who seems so at home in the role, it’s almost as if he wears the dress at weekends.
Mother Goose is the focal point of a bet between Fairy Aurora and bog troll Smorg, who disagree on their views on the good in humanity.
It all leads to her goose laying golden eggs, wicked attempts to grab it, wild flights of fancy and a visit to a magical mountain.
Aileen Collings’ Smorg is a cracking baddie, but with Rod Stewart’s hair, so it does kind of make you feel you’re booing a pensioner.
Gavin Potter’s nasty Baron is more of a classical villain, in that he talks like he has an Uzi in his throat and wears a stunning moustache.
His hapless sidekick Gonk, played brilliantly by Helen Brown, is a delight, while the love-interest couple of Freya and Sven (Emma Clark and Lisa Starrs) warms the heart.
But star of the show goes to Heidi the Goose. Fiona Eades doesn’t have a word to say – which means not one is forgotten – but she exudes so much more than words with her body language. Brilliant.
The play is performed tomorrow and Saturday, at 7.30pm. Tickets are £6, children £3. It’s not to be missed.
Smorg: Aileen Collings
Fairy Aurora: Lindsay Easter
Mother Goose: Doug Crabbe
Freya Goose: Emma Clark
Heidi the Goose: Fiona Eades
Baron von Rumpensmaka: Gavin Potter Gonk: Helen Brown
Sven: Lisa Starrs
The Grand High Snow Goose: Sarah Pate
Boss Snowman: Kelly Robertson
Chorus: Sarah, Fiona and Kelly