Opened 10 December 2016, Closed 8 January 2017 at the Garrick Theatre in London
Seven classic pantomimes for the price of one - that's Potted Panto in London this Christmas! The great British festive tradition of panto returns to the West End for an amazing fourth time in this whistle-stop tour for all the family starring CBBC presenters Dan and Jeff.
In a madcap ride through the biggest stories and best-loved characters from panto, our dastardly double act dash from rubbing Aladdin's lamp to roaming the golden streets of Dick Whittington's London. Searching for Cinderella's lost slipper, they try to wake Sleeping Beauty before the giant climbs down Jack's beanstalk to squash Snow White's seven dwarves. It's all unmissable fun, whether you're six or 106.
Potted Panto in London is written by Daniel Clarkson, Jefferson Turner and Richard Hurst, it is directed by Richard Hurst and Hanna Berrigan with designs by Simon Scullion, lighting by Tim Mascall and music by Phil Innes. Potted Panto comes after the hugh success that Dan and Jeff have had with their smash hit Potted Potter which has enjoyed three Christmas seasons in London's West End at the Trafalgar Studios in 2007, 2008 and 2009, and a summer season at Garrick Theatre in August 2010 - Potted Panto has enjoyed three previous seasons in London - at the Vaudeville Theatre previewed from 10 December 2010, opened on 14 December 2010 and closed on 9 January 2011, returned from 18 December 2011 to 8 January 2012, returned previewed from 8 December 2013, opened on 11 December 2013 and closed on 5 January 2014.
"Jeff Turner, short and anxious, plays the narrator who wants things tidy, while the gangling Dan Clarkson is the anarchist, ignorant of the conventions of panto, sabotaging the old 'behind you' gags, and expressing childlike horror at the fate of the villains. The audience - from three-year-olds to riotous school parties - are of the Ali G and Borat generation, and fall around with delight at the mixture of sarcasm and slapstick... As for the rudely self-milking pantomime cow and the doomed effort to play both ugly sisters at once - well, you get the idea. Cheap, cheerful, deafening, but not dumb. Smart." The Times
As an introduction to pantomimes for tinies, this cheap and relentlessly cheery concoction is jolly enough. It whips through Jack And The Beanstalk, Dick Whittington, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, Snow White and Aladdin, pulling on a hat here and a frock there, and listing the essential elements of panto: rubbish cross-dressing, obligatory audience contrariness, custard pies, contemporary political satire, a (not remotely) enchanting fairy, the rules of 'he's behind you', toffee-throwing, wee-wee jokes, buckets of horse poo and, finally, a cheesy singalong. There are a few bright ideas, such as when the lads get the children to imagine they are driving Cinderella's coach, and I confess I giggled as much as the little ones when Prince Charming proposes to a man in the audience and they have a 'premarital dance' in the aisle to the tune of Je T'aime. A running gag has Jeff claiming he would prefer to be staging the Second World War movie Das Boot or Dickens's A Christmas Carol, either of which, frankly, might have been much more amusing... Had I caught one of the toffees, it might have sweetened me up." The Mail on Sunday
Potted Panto in London at the Garrick Theatre opened on 10 December 2016 and closed on 8 January 2017