REVIEW: Birmingham Youth Theatre's Sleeping Beauty
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REVIEW: Birmingham Youth Theatre’s Sleeping Beauty

REVIEW: Birmingham Youth Theatre’s Sleeping Beauty

It’s January… which means Birmingham Youth Theatre are back with their annual pantomime! This year it’s Sleeping Beauty and as usual, BYT delivered a delightful take on a classic tale. Directed by Vivienne Morrison, these talented young performers put on a glittering panto at The Crescent Theatre, Birmingham from the 12th-14th January 2024.

The panto follows King Septimus and Queen Sybil’s daughter, Princess Aurora, who was cursed by the evil Carabosse, after being snubbed of an invitation to the Christening. The curse means that she’ll prick her finger on a spinning wheel on her 18th Birthday and die. While the curse can’t be reversed, the Fairy Queen alters the curse so that Aurora would instead enter a 100-year sleep that can only be woken by true love’s kiss…

REVIEW: Birmingham Youth Theatre's Sleeping Beauty
@PhotosByJenno – Luke Griffiths as Prince Michael

Livvy Owen played an enchanting Princess Aurora, beaming with charisma and a sensational rendition of ‘Another Love’. Luke Griffiths gave a West End-worthy performance as Prince Michael. Griffiths’ solos ‘Someone Like You’ and ‘Unstoppable’ were some of the show’s stand-out moments. Harrison Doherty shines as the Dame, Nanny Nora, bringing the perfect balance of extravagance and humour to the stage – no easy task! Shoutout to the costume team for Doherty’s spectacular outfits and those impressive quick changes!

REVIEW: Birmingham Youth Theatre's Sleeping Beauty
@PhotosByJenno – Livvy Owen as Princess Aurora

Eva Phelan brought a show-stopping, evil performance to the stage as Carabosse. ‘I Put a Spell on You’ made for a thrilling musical number, perfectly matched to Carabosse’s character. Megan Allsop was a triumph of a sidekick, with excellent characterisation as the Raven. The pair made for a memorable villainous duo.

@PhotosByJenno – Eve Phelan as Carabosse & Megan Allsop as Raven

King Septimus (Gethin Randerson) and Queen Sybil (Kitty Smart) had an electric love-hate chemistry. Their bonding brought plenty of laughs, thanks to their strong comedic timing. David Morrison, as Barney The Court Jester, expertly encouraged audience participation to give a traditional panto feel, and notably became the highlight in a few numbers like the Madness Medley.


Hans (Andrew Morrison), Bruce (Luke Holcroft) and Lance (Edgar Shirley) brought the house down with their humourous musical numbers – as potential candidates to take Aurora’s hand in marriage. From ‘His Name is Lancelot’ to ‘Down Under’, the trio delivered individually witty performances with perfect song choices.

The Fairy Queen, played by Daisy Wright, opened the show effortlessly, with Fairy Moonbeam (Bea Roberts), Sunlight (Sophie Terry) & Stardust (Lucie Holcroft) – all giving graceful performances. Additionally, Saran Sambhi had a commanding presence as Lady Chamberlain.

BYT’s Sleeping Beauty featured a range of songs, with everything from a number from Spamalot and Hocus Pocus to the classic 80s hit ‘Walking on Sunshine’. And it’s the chorus & dancers who became a vital aspect of this show – nailing the choreography and supporting vocals on company numbers.


The choreography from Kennedy Glews boasted flare and energy, giving the musical numbers extra exuberance for an entertaining watch. Going Dark Theatrical Services bring extra professionalism with spot-on lighting design & programming. Similarly, Dan Clarkson Productions sets the bar for Sound in an amateur production.

Vivienne Morrison directed the cast to bring the comedic script to life in superb fashion, as well as secure strong pacing. Chris Corcoran returned as Musical Director for BYT, leading a brilliant 4-piece band. Corcoran adds his signature magic, bringing out the very best vocal performances. Additionally, Maddison Clarke proves herself as a Production Assistant, helping bring the best out of the cast with her expertise as BYT Alumni.

Discover more about Birmingham Youth Theatre here.

Congratulations to all cast & crew – looking forward to venturing Under The Sea in July with The Little Mermaid!

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