Daisy Pulls It Off at The Spring in Havant

CBBC Presenter Michael Absalom  visits You're a Star Theatre School

Theatre school visited by CBBC presenter

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Jolly hockey sticks, jolly dee, jolly good show! Or to put it another way, as one Latin-speaking pupil at Grangewood School for Girls repeatedly does, ‘jubilate!’

Yes, rejoice in a Bench Theatre production that rattles along, portrays mainly farcical characters in broad brush-strokes and bubbles with inventiveness under the typically fun-loving direction of Mark Wakeman.

His conjuring of an instant library on an essentially bare stage is one pocket masterpiece.

In Denise Deegan’s play, Daisy Meredith is the first pupil from an elementary (or state) school to win a scholarship to Grangewood. Bouncing with bonhomie towards everyone, she is shocked by the sheer venom of one snob in particular.

Fern Bicheno has as much fun with that girlish superbitch role as Tasmin Halford does with that of Daisy’s hyperactive best friend - the one who alternates between exclaiming ‘Jubilate!’ and ‘Oh Jemima!’

The title role is a first for Beth Evans, and she throws herself eagerly and effectively into the search for lost treasure, hockey heroics and daring cliff rescue.

Among many other delights are Alice Corrigan natural comic authority as a good-hearted head girl, Jaspar Utley’s enigmatic Russian, and real-life headteacher Julie Wood’s wittily-observed portrayal of a second-year pupil.

Yes, it really is that sort of jolly good show. Topping, in fact.

Until next Saturday.

MIKE ALLEN

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