Thursday, 21 May 2009

Spongebob Squarepants - Liverpool Empire

Spongebob Square Pants -The Sponge Who Could Fly.
Book: Stephen Banks

Music/Lyrics: Eban Schletter

Director: Gip Hoppe

Reviewer: The Astbury Family

IIf you were to mention Spongebob Squarepants to any breathing child, you would probably get a very warm reception, so it is with no real surprise that this anarchic Nickleodeon cartoon has been given the onstage adaptation.

Telling the story of Spongebob’s failure to swim with the Jellyfish, he soon learns how to fly, but nothing ever runs that smooth in a musical does it? The start of the show gets off to a s
olid start with some enthusiastic audience participation by Patchy The Pirate and the fun doesn’t stop coming!

David Gallo’s wonderfully bright set designs felt like you were watching the TV show, the added effect on the bubble machine was a stroke of genius, and just one of the many parts the younger audience members loved. The set was complimented by Mirena Rada’s costumes which were exceptionally well conceived.

Director (Gip Hoppe) and Choreographer (Jen Rapp) have managed to produce a show the through its family friendly 90 minute length manages to keep the kids captivated. Rapp’s Choreography really helps push the story along and ‘The Flying Dutchman’ scene really is something special and aided with Nigel Plaskitt’s help with the puppetry really amazed us at the things you can achieve.

Although Spongebob is the central character, Chris Coxon’s portrayal became very annoying, trying far to hard to replicate Spongebob's trademark voice, turning into something that was had to understand and more like Joe Pasquale every minute.Charles Brunton as Squidward really stole the show for us, his character was nailed to perfection, from his comic acting, voice and mannerisms this was a faultless performance.

here is a lot to keep a family entertained in this production but we felt that at times although great, the dancing and singing at times went on a little too long and which meant that the children’s attention tended to wonder a little, but with a new scenic surprise just around the corner it was quickly brought back onto the stage.

Lloyd age 9 :
The show was good, but the singing was a bit long. The actor’s were funny I laughed a lot. The costumes were
really good and looked just like the cartoon characters.

Jamie age 9 :
My favourite parts was the use of scenery, this was very good and one part especially made me laugh. The singing and dancing was a little boring sometimes but I enjoyed myself lots.

Spongebob has a great storyline and there is plenty of interesting parts and jokes to keep even the hardened of us adults amused, and if the children's reaction at the end was anything to go by then this show is a hit!

Spongebob runs at the Liverpool Empire until Sat 23rd May
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