REVIEW: Matthew Bourne’s Cinderella at Mayflower Theatre, Southampton

Matthew Bourne's Cinderella. Photo by Johan Persson.
Matthew Bourne's Cinderella. Photo by Johan Persson.
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A fairytale for adults comprising betrayal, passion and love in three acts with a score composed by Sergei Prokofiev, Matthew Bourne’s Cinderella is simply divine.

Set against the backdrop of The Blitz with clever use of projections and scene changes.

Air raid sirens, sounds of the bombing and music hall tunes help immediately transport us back to 1940s London.

It is no secret that Matthew Bourne is a lover of classic cinema – his last show was an adaptation of the 1948 Powell and Pressburger film The Red Shoes – and it is possible to spot various homages throughout the production.

His Fred Astaire-style Angel instead of a fairy godmother is just superb and expertly performed by Liam Mower.

Ashley Shaw as Cinderella and Andrew Monaghan as the Pilot (in lieu of the traditional prince) beautifully dance an absorbing love story.

Act two is stunning in its reverse portrayal of the bombing of the Café de Paris. The clever use of lighting adds to the atmosphere, as does the character acting of the dancers. As with any Matthew Bourne production, it consists of many layers of which I am still unpicking.

This production is must-see Matthew Bourne, who for me, now has a production to rival his iconic Swan Lake.

Until Saturday.

CARRON EVANS