This year’s pantomime has achieved the seemingly impossible – another improvement on the previous one. The Octagon has been on a roll for several years now, and this time the familiar knockabout Eddie Dredge has taken over the directing role, handing his usual persona to the wry and hilarious Jack Glanville, whose Jangles delights audiences of all ages.
Then there is Sam Rabone, this year giving his Nurse Nellie to his fans built up over the past three years. Together these two light up the wide stage, in the now traditional magazine sketch and a splishy-sploshy-squirty bathroom scene that had the younger members of the audience in squealing hysterics.
Oliver Watton, last season’s Jack up the beanstalk, returns as the handsome prince Michael, with Victoria McCabe as Beauty, Rachel Barrington as the dominating Carabosse and Lizzie Frances as Fairy Moonbeam. The king, played by Glyn Dilley, joins in with aplomb.
There are six acting, singing dancers in the company and each night a team of eight Yeovil youngsters joins in as courtiers, ghouls and villagers, and under the direction of choreographer Jess Oldfield I have never seen better dancing on the Octagon panto stage.
With a set based on the castle of Neuschwanstein, spectacular special effects and non-stop audience participation this fast-paced panto is a tonic and a joy.