Review: Hilarious ‘Sinbad’ a refreshing festive treat

Sinbad the Sailor is at the Pemads Little Theatre until December 15
Sinbad the Sailor is at the Pemads Little Theatre until December 15
Image: Fredlin Adriaan

“Of all the stories that have been told, in all the lands and languages … the greatest one of all was Sinbad.”

This is the perfect way to introduce the audience to Pemads’ latest fun-filled, laugh-a-minute production of Sinbad.

No end of year is quite the same without an annual pantomime and theatre-goers are in for a treat as Pemads brings to the stage another fresh musical theatre gem.

With fantastic costumes, well-placed props and seamless scene changes, Sinbad the Pantomime lives up to much of its hype as a refreshing step away from the more recent Cinderella, Snow White and Sleeping Beauty.

Written by Durbanite Steven Stead and directed by Bay theatre stalwart Leslie Speyers, Sinbad is littered with tongue-in-cheek snippets of cultural and contemporary issues, bringing the production to the audience in an engaging and relatable way.

With Richard Campbell as musical director and Sian-Beth Hitchner choreographing the musical numbers, this panto will leave you tapping your feet and singing along to well-known contemporary hits.

Main protagonist Glenn McIlroy will melt many hearts with a voice seldom heard on stage in Port Elizabeth. He is comfortable in his role as Sinbad and exudes confidence throughout. The heroine in the tale of love, greed, friendship and jolly fun is Marina, played by Abigail Ranwell.

Ranwell’s character is complete and well rounded, and a good choice to place alongside McIlroy.

Marina’s long-time nurse and carer Ameena (Kathleen Fouche) is a force to be reckoned with and delivers some truly hilarious moments.

Sinbad’s mother and panto-dame Donna Kebab (Jaydee Mulder) brings to life the over-the-top dairy queen who spends her days churning camel milk before being swept away on an adventure.

No one will easily forget Dame Donna and her son Silly Billy (Daniel Hamilton) as they render a mash-up of Kelis’s Milkshake and Black Eyed Peas’s My Humps – hilarious to the point that it’s almost scandalous.

No pantomime would be complete without an evil villain hell-bent on ruining everyone’s fun. Alieshea Vanderryken as the evil Sultana of Baghdad, Morgiana, sets in motion an epic journey for Sinbad and his entourage who set sail in search of a magic pearl.

Rod Andrews as swashbuckling pirate Captain Long John Slither, and his somewhat wayward right-hand man Mushtapha KitKat, played by David Jordaan, bring home the comedic relief.

Also look out for Dimple the camel, who has no lines but is a hoot to watch.

For a great family outing head to the Little Theatre in Central.

Shows start at 7.30pm on weekdays (no Monday show). On Saturdays the shows are at 2.30 and 7.30pm and Sunday the show is at 2.30pm only. The run ends December 15 and tickets are R90 at Computicket.

Inquiries: Liz Jordaan on 082-561-5448 or visit Pemads’s Facebook page.