Tag Archives: Jack and the Beanstalk

REVIEW: Jack and the Beanstalk – King’s Theatre, Glasgow

If it’s a big traditional panto with plenty of glitz and sparkle you’re looking for, then Glasgow King’s certainly delivers year on year.

This year’s offering is Jack and the Beanstalk, starring local panto treasures Elaine C. Smith and Johnny Mac, and save for these two local favourites, it’s a minor TV celeb-free zone and all the better for it.

The story largely follows the traditional tale: there’s a huge furry cow, some magic beans, a growing beanstalk, a fabulously realised giant and the requisite evil baddie, some familiar tunes – mostly oldies, there are no new pop hits. It’s re-set to Glasvegas with some familiar local references thrown in and most of the usual panto tropes intact. There’s no slapstick, a tiny bit of audience participation, the dame is a woman, the princess doesn’t need a man to vanquish the foe and proposes to her beau – all a refreshing move in the right direction. It needs mentioning though that a sequence between Mac and Smith incorporating the names of famous chocolate bars, was seen last year almost exactly in Cinderella at the SEC Armadillo.

Elaine C. Smith is much-loved and a solid pair of hands for a production as big as this and Johnny Mac is entirely loveable and endearing as Jack, the audience is onside from his first wide smile. Less effective is Anne Smith as the panto baddie Mrs. Blunderbore, an unfortunate visual joke from Jack about her performance being a bit flat, is unfortunately accurate, and in contrast to her co-stars her costumes are utterly lacklustre – more Poundland than Pantoland.

All in all, it’s exactly as you would expect every year from the King’s – big, bold and beautifully executed. A fine night of traditional entertainment.

Runs until 5 January 2019

Image: Richard Campbell

Originally written for and published by The Reviews Hub

WHAT’S ON DECEMBER: Jack & the Beanstalk at Beacon Arts Centre Greenock

Poor Dame Trot and her son Jack hardly have a bean to their name, and to make things worse the village is being terrorised by a wicked giant. Can Jack defeat the giant, win the heart of his one true love and solve his economic woes?

The show stars Still Game’s Jane McCarry as Queen Grizelda, Mark Cox as Fleshcreep, River City’s Jimmy Chisholm as Dame Trot and the hilarious Lee Samuel as Simon. The quartet return by popular demand having proved a huge success in the Beacon panto over the last few years.

Once again the Beacon Arts Centre will have all the ingredients for a perfect family panto, with a dastardly villain, a hapless comic and a hilarious panto dame, as well as spectacular sets and costumes, fabulous songs and dances and bags of slapstick fun!

6 – 31 December 2019

Beacon Arts Centre, Greenock

Tickets: http://beaconartscentre.co.uk/events/tags/jack-and-the-beanstalk/