Review: She’s as cold as ice…

I seem to be spending more time in the theatre than anywhere else lately, not that I’m complaining when the quality of the shows is this high. After being lucky enough to see Once – The Musical last week, I was also treated to tickets to see The Snow Queen at the Maddermarket Theatre in Norwich on Friday night. I have to be honest and say that the production was seriously lacking, as was the acting.. But it was a funny little show and we found a lot of entertainment in one of the cast who was clearly taking the mickey out of the whole show. We normally go to the pantomime at the Theatre Royal but all the tickets were sold out on this occasion, nevertheless, it was a lovely evening out and nice to spend some festive time with the boyfriend’s family.

It also reminded me of how utterly creepy and terrifying the tale of The Snow Queen truly is. I remember being terrified of it as a child but couldn’t remember why until I saw it brought to life on stage – the combination of hating children, sapping all of sunlight and happiness out of the world and the ghosts of dead children coming up from under the ice brought it all flooding back to me! Not exactly a children’s story eh Hans Christian Anderson?

This production was the first I had seen at this little theatre and I have to say it definitely had the feeling of a school play where the teachers have stepped in because the children had forgotten their lines. I was in no way expecting a full-blown West End spectacular, but I have been to several other smaller theatres which have provided better staging and acting without hamming it up. I understood that it was a family production but I did feel that it became almost ridiculous as the characters ploughed onwards through the snow.

My highlight of the production was most definitely the red-headed chap who played the Prince and then later one of the robbers. I couldn’t tell in parts if he had been drafted late and didn’t really know what he was doing/couldn’t be bothered or was just taking the mickey out of the production – I came to the conclusion later that it was the latter! He was hilarious and was clearly trying to make the other actors laugh and fluff up their lines. Throw in some ridiculous facial expressions and a mock bow towards the end and I was in hysterics.

Perhaps the family aspect of the show was still there, the young kiddies sitting in front of me seemed to really enjoy it, although I think they were struggling to keep interest towards the end. Another highlight of the show was when one of these kiddies turned round and asked his mum very loudly “What’s a fraction?” – as if the show could get any scarier with complicated maths problems!

I’ll be honest and say I probably won’t be hurrying back to the Maddermarket Theatre, the theatre itself was too much like a school hall and I just felt that the whole thing could have been more polished like many of the other amateur productions I have seen, but I wouldn’t be completely pt off seeing another. Has anyone else seen productions at the theatre? What did you think?


6 responses to “Review: She’s as cold as ice…

  1. I went to see it with my mum as she likes Christmas themed theatre (I have to say it isn’t really my cup of tea) and you’ve hit the nail on the head with this one; in the defence of the Maddermarket though this is probably one of the *ahem* least good performances I have seen there, usually the standard is higher than that even at an am-dram level. The Prince was indeed very funny but I have to say Cobweb was probably the saviour of the show in my opinion 😀 Xx

    • Heyy, ahh I’m glad to get someone else’s opinion on this show – you never know if it is just an off-night.. I’m glad to hear the theatre do better than this in other shows – will have to try and see another there to compare. Cobweb was very funny, although I found myself waiting for him to trip as he ran up and down the aisles! haha What other shows have you seen at the theatre? xx

      • Over the years I’ve seen quite a lot of things (a lot of family shows that I’m sure must have been better than that because my parents would have given up taking us haha). I’ve seen quite a few Shakespeares there too: Romeo and Juliet, Much Ado About Nothing and Richard III, they were probably back when I was a teenager/ studying my A Levels but I think I was probably more of a harsh critic then I am now and I don’t remember thinking they were bad haha. Sadly the Snow Queen was the first play I’ve seen there in a long time (probably since leaving for Uni) and I really love the story so it’s a shame it wasn’t quite up to parr. Like I said though it’s definitely worth giving the Maddermarket another go at some point because I’m sure they have a few hidden gems every now and then! 😀 Xx

      • Ahh that sounds like a good mix – they actually had a poster up for a Shakespeare production that was coming up – think it was As You Like It or something.. That definitely appealed to me. I love watching the Shakespeare’s productions at different theatres because they are always so unique. Yes, I felt the same – was really looking forward to seeing the production but it just wasn’t up to scratch. Sounds like I definitely need to give them another shot thought – I’ll have to see what else is coming up! xxx

      • Agreed, it’s always a great way to see different takes on the plays and also a really good way to see the less “popular” or less well known Shakespeare plays too. I think I am going to have to go see something else soon just to restore my faith in the Maddermarket haha.

      • I remember when I was studying my A-levels we had to watch different filmed versions of Shakespeare plays such as Romeo and Juliet and Much Ado About Nothing – we would watch the earlier version from 30-odd years ago and then the recent version – was really interesting to see how the story remained the same but the social circumstances changed around it – shows how timeless the stories really are! I’ve just had a look on the Maddermarket website and that As You Like It show is at the end of March – tempted to go and see it – although I know nothing about As You Like It – do you? xxx

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