Shrek The Musical
A modern fairytale with added Donkey
Featuring all new songs as well as the cult Shrek anthem I'm a Believer, Shrek the musical brings the well-loved characters to life, in a hilarious and spectacular new production based on the story and characters from the Oscar-winning DreamWorks Animation film. The world of fairytales is turned upside down in an all-singing, all-dancing, irresistible mix of adventure, laughter and romance.
Now starring Dean Chisnall as Shrek, Richard Blackwood as Donkey and Carley Stenson as Princess Fiona, Shrek the musical is a great show, if somewhat of a pantomime. Shrek, the unlikely hero, and his loyal steed Donkey set off on a quest to rescue the damsel (not-in-distress) Princess Fiona from her tower guarded by a fire breathing love-sick dragon. Add the diminutive Lord Farquaad, a gang of fairytale misfits, and a biscuit with attitude, and you've got a must see musical comedy.
As per the film there are jokes for the adults too, plus a few sly and less sly digs at Disney and other West End musicals. It is hard taking an animated film and recreating it on stage but this is a polished attempt.
Richard Blackwood has the hardest act to follow in Eddie Murphy, and this Donkey perhaps doesn't have as many witty one-liners as the cinematic version. The real star of the show is Neil McDermott, who plays Lord Farquaad. This character is brilliantly portrayed, from the singing and dancing to the over-the-top acting and the fantastic way he plays the whole part on his knees! The Dragon is also a marvellous feat of engineering and skilled puppetry, with a style borrowed from the fantastic production of War Horse. Take the kids to Shrek and they'll cry tears of joy and laughter!
Shrek the Musical tickets in London:
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- A great family show. Kids adore the colourful sets and cast and parents are entertained with the slightly adult jokes. Lord Farquaad is brilliant, playing the entire performance on his knees.. Ouch!!
- Look out for the popular culture references including musicals such as Les Miserables, Lion King and Wicked, as well as films, particularly Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct.
- If you're budget doesn't stretch to the more expensive seats or you're taking a family, don't be afraid to sit a bit higher up in the Upper Circle. The view from there is still fantastic, especially for children as it's well tiered.
- Signed performance - Thursday 7th February matinee at 3pm.
I went to this show expecting to be disappointed but the stage adaptation more than lives up to the film version. Lord Farquaad steals the show as the quick witted would-be King with a size complex. A great one for all ages, if you take children rest assured you will also love it.
"The evening's real pleasure lies in the wit of the staging by Jason Moore and Rob Ashford and the quality of the designs by Tim Hatley: we get sets that open up like the pages of a children's storybook, tap-dancing rats and a scaly dragon that starts by being manually operated in War Horse style and that ends up flying over the heads of the audience."
- Michael Billington for The Guardian
"Shrek sets out to do no more than entertain, and in this it succeeds handsomely. It combines an attractive tongue-tied romance with a celebration of lovable losers and odd-bods and David Lindsay-Abaire’s book and lyrics have a welcome sense of mischief about them."
- Charles Spencer for The Telegraph
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