It’s finally here, Charlie and the chocolate factory, The musical started with a showstopping night at Sunderland Empire.
The brand new production is not one to miss. We all know the story of Charlie and the Chocolate factory and of course the man himself Willy Wonka. Seeing it come to life on stage if mesmerising and a show you will never forget.
After the success of this brand new musical on the west end and Broadway it is finally on its UK tour and here in Sunderland from 2nd August 2023 to 13th August 2023.
I could not contain my excitement when I received a golden ticket and got a backstage tour! This really was a show like no other for me and my niece.
Backstage we got to see the huge amount of props that they use throughout the show. It brough instant memories back for this who saw the originally movie and excitement to the kids ready to watch the show.
The best bit for me and the most fascinating was the dressing room. Growing up loving theatre, the biggest thing I loved was of course the costumes. This musical has a steampunk theme and the Oompa Loompas costumes of course went with that theme. We were told to look out for one of the costume changes of Grampa Jo, and believe me, if you blink you’ll miss it. I was so impressed how quick they manage to change and how organised everything it. Of course it was bright and colourful and felt surreal to be backstage. I wanted to steal a Wonka Bar but I wasn’t allowed!
After a few photos, we headed back into the audience to watch the show and it was packed out! Ready with families and kids to watch the magical world of Wonka.
Charlie was played by the talented Jessie-Lou Harvie and from the onset you fell in love with her. Charlie and grandpa Joe (Michael D’cruze) shows us the real life struggles of affording to live and although a children’s book, really hits home. The innocence of Charlie melts youre heart and when she finally gets the golden ticket, the excitement to get into Wonka’s factory is too much!
I was curious to meet Willy Wonka for the first time. I think we all have a different version of Willy Wonka is our minds depending on what area you grew up. Gareth Snook who plays Willy Wonka was fabulous. He was brilliantly eccentric and made me laugh so much! I even shed a tear at the end because I had fell in love with him so much! You might recognise him from Phantom of The Opera and his experience really does come through on stage. With riddles that are hard enough to say, he never once got tongue tied!
The casting on this production was brilliant. The characters Veruca Salt (played by Emma Robotham-Hunt) and Augustus Gloop (played by Robin simoes Da Silva) were just so good at bringing out the characters on stage.
This show is definitely one for the kids. Seeing all the props come to life on stage was great. They really did do such a great job of making you feel you were in the factory with them and a brilliant production by James brining.
*gifted ticket but opinions are my own
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