Review: Peter Pan

Peter Pan at the Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline
Peter Pan at the Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline

Running at Carnegie Hall, Dunfermline until December 24

As soon as you step into the elaborately decorated foyer at the Carnegie you can’t help but become infused with festive cheer, setting you up nicely for this year’s Christmas show, the theatre’s alternative to the traditional panto.

The narrator sets the scene for the story of Peter Pan, the boy who never grew up and his band of Lost Boys who live in Neverland, second star to the right and straight on ‘til morning.

Having chased his shadow into the bedroom of Mr and Mrs Darling, Peter takes the children Wendy, John and Michael back to Neverland with the promise of a life of endless fun and adventure.

But Peter doesn’t mention his arch enemy the pirate Captain Hook who hatches a plan to kidnap Wendy in an attempt to capture and kill Peter. Throw in some warrior natives and a mermaid enchantress and there is plenty of action on display.

Throughout there are plenty of songs including a bawdy pirate romp through Adam And The Ants’ ‘Jolly Roger’ and a quite unexpectedly surreal take on ‘Jackie’ by Scott Walker. Didn’t see that coming, I have to say.

Perhaps most impressive of all are the stage sets and imaginative use of shadow and light to help illustrate the narrative which at times are quite spectacular.

Ultimately, whilst it retains a few of the “it’s behind you” elements of a normal panto, this is a much more straight forward affair, and no less enjoyable for it.

So if you find panto dames, corny jokes and loud singalongs as appetising as Christmas leftovers, then this is the perfect antidote.

A charming and beautifully presented production, with excellent performances all round.