The Queen’s Theatre proudly presents Beauty and the beast, based on the original French novel by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve. Adapted for the stage by Andrew Pollard.

The story of Beauty and the Beast was, of course, made famous by the 1991 Disney Movie and recent live-action musical remake, but The Queen’s Theatre production goes back to the original French novel by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve, including characters such as Charlie Cupid (played by Oliver Lynes) and Beauty’s Sister.

The play brings a much more modern feeling to the story using music from artists such as Queen and ‘Goo Goo Dolls’. At points it felt more like a Meatloaf tribute night with The Beast (Played by James Lawrence) standing on stage singing ‘I would do anything for love’ while playing an electric guitar.

There was some great singers amongst the cast, especially Amorette, who is the Beauty character (Played by Daniella Piper) and Soufflé (played by Molly-Grace Cutler) a character who belongs more in ‘TOWIE’ then a panto.

But this play is mainly aimed at the younger audience, and through the night you’ll find a lot more fart gags and pies in the face than you’ll find in the Emma Watson movie, but this is all part of the joy of panto and my 5-year-old daughter loved the show and took any opportunity she could to join in.

The two characters who mainly interacted with the audience was the cake maker Betty Bonbon (played by Oliver Beamish) and Charlie Cupid, between them they did a good job at getting the audience on their feet and keeping us excited. But the characters did take a little while to mature and I found myself enjoying it more in the second half.

The whole of the night was a lot of fun and I know that my 5 year old daughter enjoyed it, even though there were one or two moments that scared her. As always Beauty and the Beast brings the whole community together and it shows why The Queen’s Theatre is at the centre of Hornchurch.

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