Manor Operatic, famed for their pantomimes, brought their charm, talent and dramatic sense of staging to this feelgood musical.
The story tells of Bill, a Cockney barrow boy who suddenly finds that he is heir to a fortune.
The family think they can turn him to a toff – but his girl, Sally, just has to go. If Bill doesn’t play along, he’s in danger of losing his inheritance.
So will Bill choose the money or the girl? It’s all enjoyably daft stuff, with songs like the title song, The Lambeth Walk, The Sun Has Got His Hat On and Leaning on a Lamppost.
The opening scenes had just the right hint of send-up of the “anyone for tennis?” school of musical comedy. The start of the show was a tiny bit flat but by the time the company had ended the second half with a rousing Lambeth Walk, they had got fully into their stride.
The ensemble filled the enlarged stage with a runway in front of the orchestra very ably indeed.
James Smith was a very entertaining Bill and Christina Rice was fantastic as Sally, both in terms of acting and singing.
There were nice supporting turns from panto stars like Simon Hance and Robert Spink and Alex McVeigh had a great time camping it up with an over-the-top posh accent.
Special mention should go to the actor in the suit of armour, who stood still for ages to join in one song and dance number.
Co-directors Richard Bradford and Linda Kelly kept the action flowing along very nicely and their imaginative staging was a triumph.