By Devika Sunand
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
This pantomime will take you on a roller coaster of fun, laughter and entertainment with its amazing storyline and perfect mix of music, lights, costumes and yes, not to forget, the super cool audience. A must-watch show written, directed and performed by the talented members of Cardiff University’s Act One Drama Society, ‘The Godmother’ takes us back to the story of Cinderella but with a twist. It subverts the classic storyline of good vs evil in a whole new way and proves that ‘maybe good guys aren’t that good or bad guys aren’t that bad as they seem to be’. what if they are just being purposefully portrayed this way by someone (maybe a fairy godmother)?
The relationship of Cinderella and her sisters which has always shown the ‘ugly’ sisters in a bad light seems to be just one side of the story. I honestly prefer this story of Cinderella over the original one. The reason? This version is not a typical fairy tale about a prince and a princess. This is a solid story with a great message to think about: that there is some good in all evil and not all good guys are actually good. And so we learn that nobody’s perfect, and that good and bad coexist within people.
The reactions of the audience and their involvement in the pantomime were a treat to watch. The expression of anger when the fairy godmother purposefully wrote stories about Cinderella’s sisters and other ‘villains’ to create and maintain a bad image about them in the public eye, and when she behaves rudely with her workers. They pitied them and commented on the act. The ability to instil emotions in an audience is a great sign of success. When the audience feel the emotion you are trying to convey, you succeed as an actor and the script truly comes alive. There was a moment when a member of the audience was picked for a fun interview as part of the story. And guess what, she turned out to be the mother of one of the actors playing a wolf (remember the wolf from ‘The Red Riding Hood?’). The way she played along with the story left the whole audience in awe. In short, the level of hard work and dedication the cast and crew put in this project is evident in their performances.
‘The Godmother’ was an extremely enjoyable pantomime, which kept the public entertained and made for a wonderful night. We cannot wait to see what the Act One Drama society have in store next!