REVIEW: Beauty and The Beast at Ashcroft Arts Centre, Fareham

Picture: Shutterstock
Picture: Shutterstock

It's a beauty of a role for this newcomer

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A production literally put together in just five days – would it be any good?

Well, the extremely talented bunch of young performers from The Kings Academy of Performing Arts – under the direction of Darren Alderton and choreographer Jessica King – absolutely smash a double bill of two-hour shows with no break in between.

The enthusiastic ensemble of 30 or so players leaves the packed audiences gasping and cheering for more with some very strong performances. Especially charming are Mrs Potts, played by Jess Fitzjohn, Lee Backhouse as Luminaire who literally lights up the stage with his charismatic presence and enchanting manner, and a solid show from the Beast himself.

The fun Be My Guest number is bursting with an energetic dance routine and strong vocals from each character. A special mention goes to the crew who make the costumes simple, colourful and effective.

Everything becomes rather overwhelming by the finale, it’s been a long time since I have felt that moved by a show. Congratulations to all the cast, it goes down a treat.