I took a blogging break this summer to concentrate on travelling with my family and now I am back, I have lots to share from my busy summer. Today is Roald Dahl day and would have been Roald Dahl’s 100th birthday, so I thought it would be fitting to share my thoughts on the West End musical production of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.
This was our first visit to London with the children. We only travel home every few years, so we wanted to show them the sights and experience a West End show. To be honest, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory wasn’t our first choice of show and we arrived with a little uncertainty. We couldn’t have chosen anything more memorable or spectacular. From curtain up it was visually mesmerising. Costume and set design were out of this world and totally lived up to the company’s aim to astound the audience.
Roald Dahl’s original story was preserved throughout but was cleverly tweaked with modern touches. The children were characterised perfectly and wonderfully portrayed by the cast. My kids spent time discussing who they would like to play; ballet dancing Veruca Salt, video game obsessed Mike Teavee or Violet Beauregarde the acrobatic child star. The parents were also brought to life in quirky and interesting ways.
Directed by Sam Mendes, this is the first stage adaptation in 50 years and completely surpassed my expectations. We all came out of the theatre feeling a little emotional. We had clearly witnessed something unique and special.
If you get a chance to see it before it closes at Theatre Royal, Drury Lane in 2017, I highly recommend it. Don’t despair if not, a UK tour is coming soon and for US audiences, the Broadway production will open in 2017.
Disclaimer: This is a personal recommendation, no monetary compensation or complimentary tickets were received for writing this post.