Youth Theatre’s James & The Giant Peach – Review

There’s no denying that Roald Dahl is the king of children’s books, so what better to adapt for the Youth Theatre stage than James and The Giant Peach? A delightful story of magic, adventure and friendship!

If you are unfamiliar with the classic story, James & The Giant Peach follows a little boy named James Trotter, who loses his parent in a tragic rhino-related accident, and is forced to live with his two vile Aunts, Sponge and Spiker. They are cruel and work poor James to the bone. But just when James is at his lowest he encounters a mystical man with a glowing green bag of magic who gives him hope and tells him that the potion will bring him immense happiness. When he accidentally falls and spills the potion on the nearby peach tree, the most incredible things start to happen. A giant peach grows, and inside, James meets and befriends a group of life-size insects who tell him they’re about to embark on the journey of a lifetime – and that they’re taking him with them!

James and The Giant Peach - Courtyard Youth Theatre

Yesterday was the opening of James & The Giant Peach here at The Courtyard, a production by our very own Youth Theatre members.

James and The Giant Peach - Courtyard Youth TheatreI may be biased, but it was marvellous! The cast of young talent were very impressive, their peachy antics had the audience chuckling, cooing and ‘awwww’-ing!

The eight main characters, James, Spider, Ladybird, Centipede, Grasshopper, Earth Worm, Spike and Sponge had great chemistry on stage, developed brilliant characters, sang fantastically well and were hilarious! They were all supported by a stream of young performers in various roles, who were professional, confident and not to mention, cute!

Kudos goes to Ellen Dorsett, the Director, who kept her cheery persona even when scrambling around after hundreds of children! To create a whole production that’s predominantly written for 8 main cast members, and manage to include the entire youth theatre so seamlessly is a great achievement. We all think she did an amazing job with the production! It was clear throughout how attentive the creative team have been behind the scenes during this creation.

James and The Giant Peach - Courtyard Youth TheatreDid I mention the costumes? The children’s costumes were all amazing; they really brought to life the characters in the story and pulled you deeper into their little peach world.

James and the Giant Peach is a brilliant, enjoyable show that’s magical from start to finish. It ticks plenty of boxes in terms of being a cracking piece of Youth Theatre that excites pretty much everyone, including adults and children!

The entire production team, cast members and parents alike should be extremely proud of themselves… I think a large slab of celebratory peach pie is in order!