Beans means ... pant-astic family fun with Billy Pearce in Jack and the Beanstalk

Billy Pearce in Jack & the Beanstalk (photo: Bradford Theatres, Nigel Hillier)Billy Pearce in Jack & the Beanstalk (photo: Bradford Theatres, Nigel Hillier)
Billy Pearce in Jack & the Beanstalk (photo: Bradford Theatres, Nigel Hillier)
Jack and the Beanstalk at the Alhambra Theatre, Bradford.

Ah the annual tradition of the old pantomime, a time honoured staple of the stage, festive frolics to get you right in the mood for the holiday period, writes Dave Kelly.

We all know the tale of Jack and The Beanstalk so would Billy Pearce and company be able to pull off this retelling yet again without it becoming repetitive.

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Yes they can, the production well rehearsed, the cast well put together. This show was side-splitting funny.

Billy is in his 22nd pantomime, the veteran never disappointing.

The Spirit of the Beans being played with good grace and favour by Divina De Campo, pulling off a series of tongue twisting one liners, shows that she’s not just a pretty face.

The pairing with Pearce showed great chemistry, hopefully a repeat team-up in the future.

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Those in attendance were more than happy just to be there and soak in the seasonal vibes.

Production-wise the animatronics were great, Billy’s jet pack scene being a standout moment.

The special turn in the form of a balancing juggler was enough to break up the shows but, to be honest, although the chap is good at what he does, I didn’t see where it fit in with the story. Although, a bit of variation is never a bad thing.

There was no sing-along at the end and no encore I have become used to at the Alhambra, who stage the best shows from the West End and beyond, so I really may have been spoilt for choice over recent months.

Is this panto good fun? Oh yes it is!