Mother Goose - The Pantomime
- Written by: Michele Amas, Songs by Paul Jenden and Music by Gareth Farr
- Directed by: Susan Wilson
- Circa One
- 16 November − 11 January
A Golden Egg of a show - Mother Goose is well worth a gander!
These Christmas holidays join Mother Goose and her friends on a flight of fantasy in an unmissable pantomime adventure.
Mother Goose hits the jackpot when Lucy the goose starts laying golden eggs. But it's not enough for her to just feather her own nest - she wants youth, beauty and a total makeover as well.
With an abundance of fun, comedy, costume and songs, Mother Goose is a must-see crackin' eggs-trava-gander of a Panto!
In Memory of Paul Jenden
From the cast and crew of Mother Goose, and everyone at Circa Theatre:
Four weeks ago, Paul was as usual designing costumes, choreographing dance and preparing for Mother Goose. We, along with the whole of the Wellington theatre community, are deeply saddened by his death. This would have been his ninth Panto. Paul’s brilliance as a performer, lyricist and designer have been seen and enjoyed by scores of Circa family audiences. Paul’s contributions to performance, choreography and design at Circa has been prolific and outstanding on every level. His musicals – Troy, Rome, Monarchy, The Nero Show and C – A Musical – along with his dance shows such as Hairy Maclary and Fairy Stories, have made an enormous creative impact on Circa’s programme over 20 years or more. He was a unique talent with many inspiring creative gifts. Paul will be missed by all who worked with him and remembered always as a special artist. Mother Goose will be dedicated to his memory.
Cast and crew
Starring Gavin Rutherford, Kathleen Burns, Jude Gibson, Lyndee-Jane Rutherford, Simon Leary, Richard Osborne, John Wraight
Musical Director: Michele Scullion
16 November − 11 January
Tuesday to Thursday 6.30pm
Friday and Saturday 8pm
$33 Friends of Circa (until 1 December)
$39 Groups 6+
$36 Groups 20+
$25 Under 25s
$107 Family Pass (2 X Adults, 2 X Children)
Panto keep laughter coming and coming
By Laurie Atkinson, The Dominion Post, 18/11/13
This year's Christmas festivities started with an explosion of fun and laughter. The opening-night audience, young and old, at the end of Mother Goose poured into the foyer beaming and chattering.
It is certainly the most consistently funny panto I have seen in a long time. It is taken at lightning speed and reaches a climax in the second half worthy of the Marx Brothers as a villainous Russian count gets his comeuppance in a rugby game which seems to be refereed by Carmen Miranda (Google if you're under 40) while the audience does a Mexican wave.
There are short, tuneful, amusing songs from the late Paul Jenden (to whose memory this show is dedicated) and Gareth Farr, and the funny choreography is by Jude Gibson who also plays the villain and a social climber.
There is plenty of audience participation and a non-stop stream of topical and corny jokes. And hidden among them (you have to be quick) are some risque ones but they will sail safely over the heads of the young.
It even has a transformation scene when Gavin Rutherford's libidinous Mother Goose swans about vacuum-packed in a glamorous dress and outrageous wig.
Mother Glenda Goose attempts to thwart John Wraight's Squire Diddly Squat who plans to build a motorway through her poultry farm, as she tries at the same time to lose weight and have a facelift.
Then Goosey (Lyndee-Jane Rutherford with a wonderful gravelly squawk) lays a golden egg and enter the villains.
The entire cast revel in all the hilarity and the sexual confusions (or "transgander" as Glenda says), which are even more complex than those in a Shakespearian comedy. This is a panto that comes out of the closet in the best possible way - with humour.