Jack and the Beanstalk
By Rod Urquhart
The Silver Stars ‘had a cow’ this past Sunday in their hilarious presentation of ‘Jack And The Beanstalk’ at the magnificent Aurora Seniors Centre.
Well, they didn’t really ‘have a cow,’ but more importantly, there is a cow in the cast, not to mention a beautifully-costumed fully grown chicken that lays gold eggs! In fact, all of the
costumes and set were really well done. (Katharine Gerrits took care of these, along with Shawna O’Neill, Carol Bowers and Sue Meacock).
All in all, the large cast did a really fantastic job with an much-adapted Jack and the Beanstalk script, which had lots of modern-day humour, ad libs by a splendid Jack (played with enthusiasm by Paul Wells), and lots of Vaudeville jokes.
It’s an old story, but this script re-write cut it down to about an hour presentation and it’s fashioned as a Pantomime, described appropriately at the very beginning by Narrator Yvonne Lewis. Joan Brownlow, who doubled as Director, assumed late in the casting the role of Dame Trott, Jack’s mother and was solid in that role.
Mike Carter also a recent fill-in took on the role of the Prime Minister and John Layton was the penny-inching King. Dawn Bovingdon, a newcomer to the group, was Princess Rose. The show was basically ‘stole’ by three cast members – Jan Freedman, who portrayed Daisy the Cow, Shawna O’Neill as Olive Rustler and John Dowson as an effective Giant. Every time Dowson appeared on stage, the many children and adults in the audience gave loud ‘boos’ and Shawn O’Neill also got her fair share of heartfelt boos as a somewhat slimy character, based on a current TV commercial.
Rounding out the terrific cast, was Sue Meacock as the Giant’s wife and Zara Stuart-Jones as the marvelous Hen. Villagers were Eleanor Joy, Yvonne Lewis, Sue Meacock and Diane Ament, who handled make-up as well. Producer was Paul Wells and Joy Gannicott added much to the music with her piano playing as it included a few songs, not to mention a ‘rap’ tune by Jack!
The Silver Stars is a voluntary group in the Aurora Seniors Centre who love theatre and bringing it to an audience to enjoy. Suffice it to say, Jack out-smarted the Giant and there was one very happy ending. All in all, an enjoyable afternoon with lots and lots of comedy laughs! Cookies after the performance were delicious!
Don’t miss the next production of the Silver Stars if it’s anything like Jack And The Beanstalk!