Many will be aware of JM Barrie‘s inspiration for the much loved children’s story were the Llewellyn Davis family. The eldest son, George, was killed at the battle of Ypres in 1915. This year marks 100 years since George’s death and this production draws on this, and the wider centenary of World War One.
Whilst this might be thought of as a children’s show – and, it is indeed suitable for children – it is superbly interesting to adults through its engagement with the darker themes of the First World War. Childhood, family, the loss of innocence and death all run throughout the show. Peter perfectly encapsulates the naive excitement of the young men going off to war when he excitedly says, ‘to die would be an awfully big adventure’.
The poignancy of the show is lifted through some joyous crowd pleasing moments: the set is a triumph and watching Peter, Wendy and the Darling brothers fly is pure ecstasy. There are some uplifting moments of comedy and some genius touches: a feisty Tink and a speccy, Northern Smee.
The experience is only enhanced by the beautiful surroundings and twinkly lights of the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre. It is an athletic and dynamic show and on until the 14th June. I would urge you to go and see it – a wonderful evening’s entertainment! 4/5
Review by E.C.
Peter Pan is currently showing at the Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre until Sunday 14th June. For more information on the production, visit here…