Into The Woods Review

NODA Nottingham. Show Report: Into The Woods (Junior)
Presented by Big Box Youth Theatre
Bonnington Theatre, Arnold
On Saturday 21st June 2014
Director: Ami Fitzpatrick
Musical Director: David Hails,  Choreographer: Elizabeth Fitzpatrick

The Big Box Youth Theatre performed Into The Woods Junior Edition at the Bonnington Theatre, Arnold. With book by James Lapine and Music/ Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, Into The Woods is a clever interweaving of classic fairy tales that we are all familiar with by utilising an alternative ‘behind the scenes’ narrative.

Utilising a simple set, the small performance space was affectively used by director Ami Fitzpatrick, who ensured visual variety throughout, delivering with all key directional elements. David Hails (MD) had evidently worked hard with the young cast, ensuring that Sondheim’s syncopated and rhythmic style was mastered by each of the performers; never missing a cue. Good musical sound balance was also ensured between the recorded accompaniment and performers. The choreography by Elizabeth Fitzpatrick was adequate and simple, making good use of the space, although it would have been nice to see a little more dance from this group.

The acting from the entire young cast was very strong with clear diction and projection prevalent by all. Characterisation was consistent and definitive, with each cast member clearly presenting well recognisable characters with good stage presence. Musical numbers were not affected by the use of space microphones and nice group sound was achieved. Whilst the entire cast performed well, I thought that Daniel Bartley (the Narrator) and Victoria Collett (the Witch) both held the stage well, each providing very competent and strong performances, which I am sure that they will be extremely pleased with; certainly talents to watch out for in the future.

Technically, this show was simply yet affective. The set was basic and allowed for seamless transitions and consistent pace. The back stage work was handled well and didn’t interfere with the action on stage. Costumes were well sourced and consistent; adding to overall aesthetics. Finally, the sound and lighting was well planned, controlled and executed.

Overall, this was a pleasant production which looked like a lot of fun for all involved. From all at NODA, keep up the good work and we look forward to seeing your next production.

Show Report by Matt Fry
NODA Nottingham, District 3, East Midlands Region
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Here is a link to some of the images from the show