Don’t touch Nefertiti

It’s a regular and long lasting tradition, that we warm up to our family & friends Christmas lunch by attending the Matinee showing of the Crazy Christmas Cabaret, for the past years in Glassalen in Tivoli, and of course this year was no difference. What was slightly different, was the fact we attended 21st of November, where normally we go the first or second Saturday in December.
Don't Touch NefertittiObviously, at the ensuing drinks and dinner, the first topic to be addressed is: How was it this year. Because, as we have found out, it does vary greatly from year to year.
The plot, the theme, the script, the performances and the circumstances all have a say as to how “this years” CCC will be perceived. One year, Andrew Jeffers got sick before the last scene – food poisoning, which was deliciously ironic, since his dress theme that year was food with lots of cakes and fruits as decorations.
Katrine Falkenberg, one of my absolute cast favorites, has been away on maternity leave and this year she had a sore throat on the night. Oh, and Caspar Phillipson, who is a new kid on the cast, this year was sick and hastily replaced. 2 years ago Vivienne McKee took a break from performing and was not part of the cast and same year my eldest son was the CCC virgin to go on stage.
Falaffel and StoneSo what did I think of this year’s show? Well, to get the negative out of the way and because my impression is overwhelmingly positive, I’ll start by pointing out what didn’t work quite as well as it could have. The plot was very messy, even more than usual, with a lot of open threads that sort of never got closed, but quite frankly, we have become used to that, and it’s really not that important. Vivienne tried to take a behind the scenes role a couple of years back, but probably from popular demand including mine, she returned to the stage last year. Maybe she should try retiring again. She didn’t seem quite as energetic and driven as we have become used to, and everyone surely appreciate she has done her duty and beyond. Both her and Bent deserve to enjoy the autumn of their life maybe spiced up with a bit of writing the scripts. Oh, and the day we were there, the original choice of Crazy Christmas Virgin to come on stage was really poor, but was corrected by the time a person had to come on stage. Even though it was a mistake, it was surprising, as I have otherwise always been impressed by their picks. Finally, the audience routine on Nefertitti wasn’t good. Well, at least I didn’t like it – I thought the combination of gestures was awkward. That’s about all, as far as negatives are concerned.
Vivian McKee

The character they ended up pulling on stage was a hit. I’m not quite sure if he was stoned, drunk or just “up for it” but he had everyone in stitches – and that included the cast on stage! We always sit on first or second row, and thus take in some of the going ons between cast members while they are not in action. Also, we notice most of the attempts to tease each other or to get each other to crack up. I don’t know if it was because we were unusually early in the season or whether it was just a good night, but I can’t remember having experienced the cast having to pause to put on their serious face or just cracking up on stage quite as much as they did. And obviously, it’s fantastic. This is what a Christmas Panto is for. I’d be intrigued to know if it was part of the script or another attempt, that when Vivian McKee (as Ms Stone) was asked to go and find Bent van Helsingore to tell him to join the crew, Bateson suggests she brings him herself “so we can be sure he will find it” and then she could always leave after that. It was an innocent enough of an exchange, but it had the air of an attempted joke, not the least because Vivian didn’t have a particularly quick witty response at the ready.

Andrew JeffersAndrew Jeffers looked like he had lost some weight, and he looked better for it, and again, is absolutely outstanding in his delivery, energy and ability to include the audience. In all of his 3 roles he just controls the stage (and the audience). I am a huge fan.

David BatesonDavid Bateson in a dress?! Tarzan?! Who the hell thought out THAT idea?! Well, it was genious! He has always been fantastic in the roles he has done, but this time he showed a completely new side to his talents. Very funny. I could see this happen again next year.

Katrine FalkenbergKatrine Falkenberg suffered through a cold or a flu, but still gave a great performance and by having play-back on one (I think only one) of her songs, you really had to know HOW good she can be, to find out something was wrong.

Rikke HvidbjergNew kid on the block, Rikke Hvidbjerg, just blew us away. Such an amazing acting talent and a fantastic voice – what a catch for CCC – I surely hope she sticks around.

I know Christmas and particularly pantos are for traditions, but I personally didn’t miss the phone call to Daisy. It was getting a bit dated.

I am not alone having loved this year’s show – I can’t actually remember ever having the audience laugh that much, for that long and so many times. So, since I think this could very well be the best (out of many) Crazy Christmases I have been to, I have to give this year’s show 6 stars out of 6.

I’ll be back!

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