Aladdin And His Wonderful Lamp – Keighley Musical Theatre Company

I SPENT another hugely enjoyable night at Victoria Hall booing at the bad guys and cheering the good ones, and marvelling, as I seem to do at every KMTC show, at yet another colourful and energetic performance worthy of a far bigger stage than Keighley can provide.

How lucky we are to have them here!

A full house (and they deserved it) saw dancing of the highest standard and some wonderful singing.

Some of the jokes were delightfully cringeworthy and there were a few slightly naughty ones for the likes of me. The orchestra, as usual, played their hearts out. It was a great show all round.

Having said that, I'd like to offer a couple of thoughts through my critic's eyes, rather than my audience eyes.

The villain, Abanazer, played masterfully by Mark Hutchinson, could have done with a honcho or two to encourage even more boos, and another couple of songs would not have come amiss.

I enjoyed Widow Twankey's awfulness, and her loose dress, and Wishee Washee's boundless energy but their magic act was a little lame. One good trick amongst the bad ones would have lifted that section considerably.

The one trick that had me baffled was the magic carpet. An incredible effect balanced by some impressive bravery shown by Fiona Spencer's Aladdin and Stephanie Laycock's Princess So-Sih to be lifted twenty feet above the stage.

I felt that a little more could have been made of the Keystone Coppish police team too who largely just went through the motions. Their numbers seemed to drop off too which was a little odd, and finally with my critic's hat on, the ending was a little sudden.

The show cried out for a lavish wedding, pantomimes invariably produce one, but we were left wondering “will they or won't they?”

I loved the Tinies. Good to see that some of them were given speaking parts as they will be tomorrow's leading characters.

And the costumes, as always, were magnificent. The colours and styles were terrific; there must be a lot of burnt-out sewing machines in West Yorkshire!

Finally, congratulations to the production team of Peter Whitley, Judith Chapman and Geoff Garrett. They really are a formidable team. Lucky us again.

Peter is a consummate actor and wrote a short part – a very short part – for himself which was a nice touch.

A great show. Treat yourselves and see it this week; you will love it.

* Aladdin is at Victoria Hall, Keighley, on Saturday February 2 (1pm and 6pm); Tuesday and Wednesday January 29 & 30 (7.15pm); and Friday February 1 (7.15pm).

Visit, call 03000 301303, or call at the Copy Shop, off High Street, Keighley, to book tickets.

Martin Carr