Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: a golden ticket show at the Playhouse
and live on Freeview channel 276
Where this marketing ploy comes from is not widely known though and we must owe it all to author Roald Dahl who popularised the idea in his book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
It was here that the story of chocolate factory owner Willy Wonka would place five golden tickets within his global chocolate bars then invite the winners to the factory for a showdown to win a lifetime of chocolate.
Gene Wilder brought the character to the screen in 1971 with songs like The Candy Man and Pure Imagination before a 2005 movie version resorted to the original name and starred Johnny Depp. London’s West End worked on a stage version in 2013 and it opened on Broadway in 2017.
Along the way they won two Olivier Awards and a Drama Desk Award. The touring show opened at the end of last year in Leeds and now runs at Edinburgh Playhouse until April 15. On the evening I was there our hero Charlie Bucket was played by young Noah Walton who was superb in delivering every line and reaching some challenging notes with his vocal range. Playing his elderly grandpa Joe was Michael D’Cruze a roll he took in his stride.
Kazmin Borrer plays the spoilt little Veruca Salt ably supported by the annoying but charming Violet Beauregarde played by Marisha Morgan, Mike Teavee played by Teddy Hinde and Robin Simoes Da Silva who was Augustus Gloop
It is quite sometime before we meet Willy Wonka and see what secrets lie within the walls of the chocolate factory, but this all adds to the build up and when the charismatically magic Mr. Wonka appears he has the presence to command his every humorous word.
Willy also gets the big song Pure Imagination and all delivered with a smile and a command of the stage by Gareth Snook. In the second half we are transported to Wonka’s inner works and with each elimination a further reveal with more effects, more machines and more confections and quite spectacular for a touring production.
This was a joyful and humour filled show with many surprises and I loved the merchandise where badges, hoodies and magnets were swept aside by a mounted golden ticket to take home.