This 25th-anniversary production of the annual favourite, The Snowman, is a joyous event. Relying on movement, music and top-notch costume design rather than words it’s a treat that succeeds in connecting with toddlers as well as older siblings and parents. The show is a great outing for the whole family.
The boy at the heart of the story was delightfully played at the performance I attended. (The first Sunday afternoon show.) He also holds much promise with his steps and vivacity as a dancer of the future when older.
If the pace of a show attended by children slackens they’re lost. This does not happen here, it races along. There’s just enough of a hint of menace in a superbly danced Jack Frost to thrill without scaring the little ones away. A ballerina portraying a wind-up toy come to life shows off her delicate and precise point work, perhaps for the first time on stage to many children. She’s dressed in blue, suggesting Elsa from Frozen, which the little ones will recognise even if their parents don’t. Father Christmas arrives on stage to a great cheer from the children, looking exactly like he does on Christmas cards.
Among all the happiness and wonder of friendship and imagination, there’s a bringing of something else worthwhile to the children lucky enough to go. They learn to enjoy a story told through dance to an evocative score. Some of the children leave the theatre singing. The show is more accessible for a younger age group than The Nutcracker.
Musicians play the show’s gorgeous score from the orchestra pit with resonance and immediacy. Live music in the theatre is rare now and this is something special. (Once the show is over it’s worth taking children who are interested down to the front of the stalls to look down at the instruments over the conveniently child-height barriers).
The end of the show is a riot of happy dancing on stage. This is the point by which members of the young audience, some dressed in sparkly outfits, are also dancing in the aisles. Something else to enjoy. Don’t leave too soon though you may think the show is finishing. The breaking of the fourth wall brings a surprise to enchant and delight all.
Review by Marian Kennedy
Featuring colourful sets and extravagant costumes, exuberant dancing and a heart-warming story, The Snowman continues to enchant audiences of all ages and returns to the Peacock Theatre for its 25th year. A magical stage adaptation of the much-loved picture book by Raymond Briggs and the film directed by Dianne Jackson, The Snowman will leave you with a sense of wonder and joy as you will be transported to the wintery wonderland of a boy and a snowman who comes to life.
Join them on their magical adventure to the North Pole and relive a festive classic that, once again, will not disappoint.
The Snowman is directed by Bill Alexander and features music and lyrics by Howard Blake, including the song ‘Walking in the Air’, spectacular design by Ruari Murchison, magical lighting by Tim Mitchell, and amazing choreography by Robert North, all of which is accompanied by a live orchestra.
Peacock Theatre, London
19 Nov 2022 – 31 Dec 2022
1hr 50m (incl. 1 interval)