Review: Shrek the Musical

Review: Shrek the Musical

Shrektacular performance by all as Shrek the Musical comes to Wimbledon and Surrey. By Ellie Holmes.

We were nervous and excited to go to ‘Shrek The Musical’.

Only because there’s nothing like the critical eye of a 6 and an 8- year old that have avidly watched all Shrek movies and were now delighted, but ever so slightly apprehensive, to be going to watch it on the live stage.

Will Shrek have the same accent? Will Fiona be in the same dress? What will the swamp look like?

But we need not have worried.

Shrek The Musical is everything all of the films were and more.

We are thrown immediately into the energetic and vibrant journey of Shrek and Donkey as they set on their quest to defeat the dragon, and rescue Princess Fiona.

Whilst we follow the love story of Shrek and Princess Fiona which remains closely to the ‘beauty comes from within, and Beauty and the Beast format’ it is the support cast that take this show up a notch.

Shrek and Donkey encounter fairy-tale misfits, and this alongside thrilling renditions of songs like Freak Flag, mean the message of inclusivity, openness and kindness are as paramount as ever.

The dancing and singing in every scene is exceptional and from the Gingerbread Man puppet’s breakout of ‘Yes I know the Muffin Man’ to the dancers in Duloc, to the vocal trio of Fiona’s old, present and young- it really does flow with a sense of pace and vibrancy.

The pinnacle of this musical extravaganza for us was the Dragon played by Cherece Richards. With a clever visual trick of the human form combining with puppet, but really anything visual was blown out of the swamp with her monster vocals on the track Forever.

Her Beyoncé tribute section was so powerful, it almost overshadowed the following scenes with Shrek and Fiona.

But it is 22 years now since Shrek first came on to our screens, and so now perhaps he is happy to share the limelight with his co-stars, and this stage production certainly propels them to star status.

That’s not of course to diminish the leads. Shrek is played by Antony Lawrence, from The Lion King and leading lady Joanne Clifton from Strictly Come Dancing plays Fiona and both are excellent.

I don’t want to go ogre-board… (sorry) here but it really is a stunning show for all the family.

Shrek is at New Wimbledon Theatre until September 30 and at Woking’s New Victoria Theatre from October 30 – November 4.