Review: "Happy Place" was perfect title for Burnley based charity Team Rise's annual panto that was the best tonic to beat the January blues
For anyone searching for the perfect antidote to a frustrating week, we certainly found the solution at Burnley’s Greenbrook, Methodist Church... the Team Rise annual pantomime.
Forget reaching for that stress busting gin and posh tonic, "Happy Place" was brilliant and provided a 'high' better than any premium gin.
After a six months gestation period the final version was delivered to a capacity audience for the first of two performances on Friday, January 27th.
The pantomime was written, produced and directed by the volunteers, staff and Team Rise attendees, a group run for vulnerable adults and those with learning needs.
The costumes department at Team Rise absolutely excelled themselves, maximising the costume creativity and colourfulness. The work involved by the producer and director getting the pantomime cast to learn their words and the running order must have been huge.
It was only very briefly, we were told at the interval, that there had been any divergence from the script and only very very occasionally did the prompt need to help out.
Whilst it must have taken a lot of discipline by the director with the Team Rise thespians, their obvious enthusiasm and commitment was a privilege to witness. Two particular highlights for me were two of the Team Rise group confidently signing a song, what talents they have and another two of the team having a water pistol duel, with of course shots ending up in the audience!
The pantomime performance hits many spots. Primarily it is an outlet to involve the Team Rise attendees in a production, encouraging their personal learning and development and secondly it produces some much needed income for the Team Rise project. Finally, it provides an opportunity to demonstrate with appropriate support just what can be achieved by these great people.
Folks, I really recommend you attending next year's production. I can guarantee you will leave smiling.