Review: Into The Woods at Ferneham Hall, Fareham

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Mr Bloom's Nursery Live

CBeebies star’s new show at the Kings, Southsea, promises to be blooming marvellous

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In recent years CCADS have developed quite a reputation for popping up regularly with productions of work by Stephen Sondheim.

It’s always a brave move to take on as he has a knack for complex and fast-paced songs that can be tough to deliver.

By and large though, this is a well put together production, if a little too long at three hours plus the interval.

Some issues with the sound meant sections of singing and dialogue got lost, but in a musical based on satire the Kerry McCrohon’s Baker’s Wife shone through as a performance full of conviction and pathos, with the crystal clear vocals we’ve come to expect.

Charlotte Thomas’s feisty Little Red Riding Hood was a true delight too, larger than life and full of energy. Elsewhere there were some well-realised supporting roles from Kevin Redfern, Sheila Birt and others.

John-Paul McCrohon takes the lead and also directs, giving the show a gloomy, gothic air and making the most of a lovely set.

Louise Helyer’s orchestra lends the score a rich, full sound that would have you think there are far more than 15 people in the pit.

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