Little Red Riding Hoodie

Performance Review (Adapted from the December 2011 Newsletter)

Little Red Riding Hoodie, the 2011 Jubilee Players' annual Christmas pantomime, was well received by audiences in December at the Jubilee Hall in Bierton.

Written by Bob Taylor, assisted by Bethany Styles, it cleverly incorporated previous panto stories with local issues. Hansel and Gretel, Peter Pan, Snow White, Cinderella, Babes in the Wood and Aladdin all made appearances.

Count Sill, the villain of the piece, delightfully characterised by Joyce Baxter, was determined to take over the world (starting with Aylesbury Vale) by changing a boy, Jacob (Joseph Capjon) into a wolf in order to steal a magic lantern from Grandma Hoodie (Patti Reed) and so gain total power to build at will HS2 and further self-aggrandising edifices to match Aylesbury's existing folly.

As long as no one told the Count's 'Mumsy', his wicked plan was safe; But good prevailed over nastiness with the help of China, dewightfuwy pwayed by Hannah Rogers, who metamorphosed into Genie Of the lamp, thus enabling Grandma to turn the tables on the Count by threatening to tell his Mumsy of his evil plans. This instantly converted him, in one self-revelatory, life-changing moment, into an urban anti-HS2 and anti-tower block green terrorist. Oh, the power of panto!

Plenty of fun was engendered with comic interaction between Toggles [as opposed to Buttons!], ably played by Bob Taylor and the luscious Dame, Loopy Tuck, charmingly and dottily portrayed by Andy Capjon in a flowing Goldilocks wig and multi-coloured eyelashes!

The audience vigorously joined in with the song Robin Hood (relevance unknown) and did its part by interactively helping to bring the show to life, as did prompt Chris Roby. Yes, all that hissing and booing stuff.

As usual opportunities were taken by youngsters to get involved and some good performances were enjoyed from Joseph Capjon (Jacob/Wolf), Emily Drury (Red), Jack Mallard (market person and Hansel), Lucy Mallard (market person and Gretel), Emily Owen (Giant and Villager), Bethany Styles (Regrettal), Zyta Tunley-Stainton (Woodchuck) and Sarah Watson-Bartlett (Windy [not Wendy] and Cinderella).

Particular plaudits go to Patti Reed, that dependable trouper, who stepped in at the last minute to take over from the indisposed Dee Field, to create a most amusing and accomplished portrait of the texting technophile Grandma Hoodie, who finally scuppers the baddie.

Other cast members were Ann Pollard (Mother Hoodie) and Chris Brown (Knave [from Cinderella]) and Dexter the Texter [no one quite understood his origins!]. Brian Spry accompanied on keyboard, and Andy Capjon heroically directed the panto with assistance from Ann Pollard.

Stage Manager Alan Webber's stalwart crew constructed the set (scenery by Sian Man) and were on hand for scene changes etc as usual during the panto's run. Paul Styles was soundman, Phil Hackett, John Haes and Spyke Stainton took care of the lighting, Jan Tunley helped Patti Reed on make-up, and this time players took care of their own props. Veronica Inman's team were there to dispense refreshments during the interval.

From ticket sales and a raffle held at each show a donation has been made to Macmillan Cancer Support.

To see pictures from the performance, please hover over the Gallery tab above and select Little Red Riding Hoodie.