Leslie Artamonow (165)

Photo by Leslie Artamonow

 

I hate to admit this, but I’m a huge Peter Pan fan.

For the record, I’m hardly a fan of any cartoons, or so that’s what I call it. But when I first watched Walt Disney’s animated film Peter Pan back in my childhood days, I was hooked. It had to be one of my favourite Disney movies back then. Peter was a hero that is easy to like. And like Peter, I never wanted to grow up.

But I grew. He didn’t.

J.M. Barrie first wrote the play “Peter Pan, or the Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up” in 1904. Fast forward to 2014, there had been numerous adaptations. including the late Robin Williams’ fantastic portrayal of Peter in “Hook” (1991). However, a Peter Pan theatrical production is definitely one-of-a-kind. A refreshing change to the usual on-screen adaptations I would say.

Indeed, after touring Europe, Peter Pan has now “flown” into Resorts World Sentosa (RWS) to delight audiences of all ages – young and old alike. When I was invited to watch this at the Resorts World Sentosa theatres, I had some expectations. In the animated film that I so fondly remember, Peter Pan and Wendy could fly!

 

Luk Monsaert (50)

Photo by Luk Monsaert

 

And voila! My expectations were met. Some of the characters like Wendy and Tinkerbell did some high-flying action above the stage and even hovered right on top of the audience. I thought it was a rather spectacular sight to behold.

Tinkerbell was the overall narrator in the whole show, and I rather liked this “old school” concept. While there were no dialogues, the whole production read more like a storybook. It is literally “Once upon a time” in your face. And it’s a pretty dazzling bedtime story so to speak.

I was especially impressed by how the acrobats and stunt performers actually “crawled” and “leaped” their ways to the audience seated. There were a lot of interactions with the audience, which made the whole show multi-dimensional.

I also loved how Tinkerbell’s fairy dust was represented by bright illuminated lights held by the actors on stage before she finally revealed her graceful and elegant self. I thought the lights were a good contrast against the backdrop. The lights helped to mark the “fleeting moments” of the little fairy, and though a simple concept, it worked marvelously on stage.

 

Leslie Artamonow (325)

Photo by Leslie Artamonow

 

The characters on stage were nothing short of amazing. I especially enjoyed the chemistry between Peter, Wendy and the other characters like comedic duo John (Gerardo Tetilla) and Michael Darling (Davide Romeo), the Lost Boys and the Indians. And being a huge musical fan, I was thrilled that there were a good number of chart-topping pop songs like “Angels”, “Forever Young” and “You Raise Me Up” infused into the slick choreography. I found myself singing and bobbing my head to the groove. The songs selection were just too catchy.

All thanks to Grammy-winning composer and musical director, Mr Matt Dunkley, one of the world’s leading orchestrators, arrangers and conductors. Mr Dunkley has worked on over 100 films including Moulin Rouge, Pirates of the Caribbean and
Inception. It was rather riveting to hear Peter (Sandor Stürbl) croon a rendition of Robbie Williams’ “Angels” while gazing at Wendy (Lilly-Jane Young). And did I mention that they are real-life couples? “Peter” had earlier proposed to “Wendy” during one of their Europe tours at Glasgow! So one would not doubt their chemistry off stage or on stage!

Source: YouTube

 

Peter Pan Lost Boys moments - Photographer Leslie Artamonow (4)

Photo by Leslie Artamonow

 

And who could forget Captain Hook, the infamous villain of the entire show? I gasped (in awe) when I heard his rendition of “Nessun Dorma”. That is one of the most recognisable opera classics till date, and our Captain Hook, played by Wim Van Den Driesche, did it with operatic grace. The audience had a good laugh when the huge crocodile (which looked like a gigantic soft toy) appeared on stage, sending Hook and his pirates to a spine-chilling frenzy. Fans of Peter Pan would know that Captain Hook and the crocodile were sworn enemies. After all, the crocodile had one of Hook’s arm for dinner long long time ago. Don’t worry though, nothing gory is shown on stage. So bring the kids along!

 

Peter Pan & Hook - Photographer Luk Montsaert (13)

Photo by Luk Monsaert

 

All in all, I think Peter Pan, The Never Ending Story spells good fun for the entire family. It has all the right mix to a theatrical spectacular: Good story, brilliant music, jaw-dropping acrobatic stunts, creative props, and very beautiful on-stage chemistry. The show’s choreography is led by the brilliant and classically-trained ex-ballet dancer Mr Martino Muller from Switzerland. Peter Pan, The Never Ending Story is directed by actors director, Ms Lulu Aertgeerts, with artistic direction from Mr Geert Allaert, founder of Music Hall, who created the original idea for the show.

 

Leslie Artamonow (385)

Photo by Leslie Artamonow

 

Peter Pan Cover Image

Peter Pan, The Never Ending Story is now showing in theatres until 20 January 2015 at the Resorts World Theatre, Resorts World Sentosa. Tickets can be bought here.

 

Till the next time when I see you folks – off stage, on stage, or perhaps just behind the computer screen with my words and pictures! Follow me on instagram @nightcharmer for more exciting updates. 🙂