- A pantomime showing of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is on at Levin Little Theatre.
A packed house for the Sunday matinee played right into the hands of the cast and crew behind Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs.
The Levin Little Theatre was bursting at the seams for the matinee performance of Snow White last Sunday, and it was just what the doctor ordered.
The big crowd enhanced the atmosphere for what is a quirky spin on a classic. The pantomime doesn't just lend itself to audience participation - it's taken out a mortgage.
The show feeds off the audience and the bigger the response, the better the energy.
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was a credit to young director Declan Leahy, and he made no apologies for the cheesy script.
Leahy said he was attracted to the play by the sense of humour and puns that are littered throughout the script "like seafood".
"Some of the puns are to my taste. Reading through it I was like 'okay ... I want this'," he said.
"Audience participation is something you really go for in a pantomime. It's something we worked on ... you have to interact with the audience. The bigger the audience the bigger the participation."
"You want the smiles and you want the laughs ... be prepared to be involved."
The script had just the right amount of cheese, though. Any more and the audience would be taking it home and sprinkling it on pizza.
Leahy, at just 20 years old, was making his debut at directing big people. He had been involved with children's productions as a director of the recent show Stinkerbell, but has never been sole charge of a big show like Snow White.
"I'm very fortunate and it's been a privilege to work with this group," he said.
Leahy said he would be keen to be involved as a director again - and who knows what's around the corner.
"I hope to do it again. It's a thrill," he said.
"I really want to expand my directing and gain more experience and improve myself."
The show began casting three months ago and had a good mix of adults and children. Leahy said he was also fortunate to have the Kate Martin School of Dance come on board with some choreographed scenes that added spice and mood.
There were standout performances among the lead cast, including Dave Key - who looked like he enjoyed himself as Clarissa the Cook - while Junelle Daniel found her calling as Fairy Flora.
Letitia Moore played the part of a Wicked Queen well with a chilling screech possessed only a gifted few.
Diamond Tamatea did well as Mirriam the Magic Mirror and Prince Valiant (William Gilbert), Snow White (Isabella Pickering) and Muddles (Jacob Reeves) were all worthy of mention and gave it heaps.
The show continues with Friday and Saturday night shows and Sunday matinees up until December 5.