Peter Pan, Tri.Art at Merlin Theatre, Frome

FROME’S Tri.Art Theatre School and Dance Academy is on a roll.

The 2018 summer school production In the Heights was chosen as best youth theatre in Somerset for the year, and now the dance section has staged, almost incredibly in one week, a sensational production of Peter Pan at the Merlin Theatre.

What links them is Dillon Berry, the rapping lead in In The Heights and now dancing the title role in JM Barrie’s classic story, with a cast of 87 lost boys, mermaids, Indians, pirates, animals, fairies and of course, the family Darling.

Directed and choreographed by Amy Maughan, with assistance from Claudia Pepler and a host of helpers, the two hour show excitingly tells the familiar story to the audience. The huge company, which includes dancers from tinies to teens, gives every single performer something real to do, and they evidently love every moment of it.

And Circus Stars Frome provided nine spectacular aerialists, underlining Peter Pan’s flying skills.

This is one of those productions in which everything comes together, and the clever choice of music and the one moment of speech – I Believe in Fairies – make a real impact.

Of course it is an ensemble show, and there are far too many excellent contributions to mention them all, but outstanding are Poppy Pinkster’s truculent, jealous Tinkerbell, Ciaran Wood’s lightfooted Chief, Emily Ibbitson’s energetic Hook and especially Constance Hunter’s charming and multi-layered Wendy.  Her parents are danced with emotional skill by the “adult” participants, Abi Holmes and Ed Henderson. Dillon Berry is a charismatic, heroic Peter, just as he should be.

Well done to everyone involved!

There are two performances on Saturday 13th April, and a handful of tickets left for both


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