Shrek The Musical? What did I expect? Well I have only seen clips of the movie but I had heard great things about the stage musical and this being the big Christmas production at the Edinburgh Playhouse it kind of must be special.
Let me tell you – it was.
Young people who may not even be familiar with the ogre story can relate to this story of
the evil king, fairy princess and a cast that includes Peter Pan, the Pied Piper, the three Bears, Three Blind Mice and Pinocchio complete with an expanding nose. Using projected imaging the effect was spectacular as was the giant dragon that had a cameo role. The main characters are so well defined with Stephan Harri as Shrek, Laura main as the charming princess, Samuel Holmes as the comically evil Lord Farquaad and of course the gloriously camp donkey played brilliantly by Marcus Ayton.
I loved the subtle parodies to other musicals throughout which the youngsters wouldn’t relate to or the current references to spot – even Prince Harry & Megan get a mention. In that sense it a very modern pantomime and still closing with a well known full cast spectacular ending sending us into the streets still singing. All the other songs are original and comically musical theatre with rhyming couplets not out of place in Spamalot. Shrek is sensational though and it is the feel good show of the season.
Edinburgh Playhouse till January 7, 2018