Sleeping Beauty @ The York Theatre Royal Review

Fancy frills and festive frivolities welcome energised audience members into the kooky world of one of York’s most famous panto houses!


A new comedic piece, a very new ensemble cast and a confused new energy without the gallant Mr Berwick Kaller leading from the front. Has he gone forever? O’ no he hasn’t, o’ yes he has! Truly, who knows if Kaler will return, yet his dynamic stage supremos Barrass and Leonard hold the fort well in ensuring audiences are still highly entertained. The cheese factor, which is essential for any panto, is stilton inspired and therefore a clear success!

Sleeping Beauty is jammed packed with glittering costumes, roaring crowd involvement and, above all, catchy hit singles. David Leonard’s entrance as the dasditly evil diva has regular panto goers booing from the get go, covered head to toe in feathers and latex suiting (advised I’m sure to wear appropriate underwear). Of course, Suzy Cooper and A.J Powell are back to ensure the play has a touch of spring and sparkle, highlighting their popularity as season pros.

The piece glistens from palace inspired opening to French Riviera themed middle, eventually guiding audiences through to Evil Diva’s lair in the Act 2 finale. The chorus, supported by budding acting youngsters, use their roles as servants, fairies and anything else thrown at them with commitment and energy, electrifying the space  with colour, and of course Wagen Wheels!

Overall, although Kaler’s boots will never truly be filled, the cast do well to patch up the void that Berwick leaves behind to create something quite unique. The piece contains all the best bits of a typical York panto, water buckets running rampant and dance moves primed and ready to unleash. Don’t miss a family friendly trip to York Theatre Royal this Christmas season; you’ll be quite frankly chuckling all the way home!

Review written by Luke Redhead.

Sleeping Beauty is currently showing until Saturday 25th January 2020 at the York Theatre Royal. To find out more about the production, visit here…

Written by Theatrefullstop