Review: Cinderella at Buxton Opera House ★★★★★

Pantomine at Buxton Opera House

Pantomime season has officially kicked off at the Buxton Opera House, and this year it brings us the timeless classic, Cinderella. Staying true to the traditional plot-line of this beloved fairy tale, the two-hour show delivered an enchanting experience that left the audience thoroughly entertained.

Cinderella, portrayed by the talented Georgia Gallagher, endures the hardship inflicted by her cruel stepsisters, Tess (played by Buxton panto regular James Holmes) and Claudia (brought to life by David Dale). Despite the encouragement of her loyal friend Buttons, brilliantly enacted by Aidan Bailey, and his endearing pet, Buns, played by Felix Price, Cinderella continues to dream of a brighter future – one where she can escape her misery and find her prince charming.

Pantomine at Buxton Opera House

The Fairy Godmother (played by Charlotte Hannah Jones) is thankfully on hand to help Cinderella’s romantic quest with the Prince (Ross Clifton).

From the very start, the performance exuded energy and excitement, with plenty of audience participation from both young and old alike. The superb cast wasted no time engaging with the audience, drawing them into the enchanting world of this all-time favourite story. As is customary, there were shout-outs for birthdays and more, adding an extra layer of fun and interaction for the crowd.

The script was brimming with non-stop (slightly risque) gags and laughs, laced with contemporary references that catered to the grown-ups in the audience. This perfect balance of humour ensures that the panto remains a must-see family entertainment tradition year after year.

Pantomine at Buxton Opera House

James Holmes, as always, stole the show with his impeccable delivery of dry one-liners and flawless comedic timing. We hope to see him back in Buxton with the recently announced Jack and the Beanstalk pantomime in Christmas 2024!

While all the performers demonstrated remarkable singing abilities, stand-out performances were delivered by Charlotte Hannah Jones, whose rendition of Chaka Khan’s I’m Every Woman as the Fairy Godmother was received with lots of cheers. Georgia Gallagher’s portrayal of Cinderella also showcased her charming singing talents with her gorgeous voice.

Pantomine at Buxton Opera House

Pantomine at Buxton Opera House

The costumes, courtesy of costume designer Charles Cusick-Smith, were nothing short of outstanding. The ugly sisters were hilariously over-the-top, and Cinderella shimmered in her glittering ballgown. The Prince sported a rather very fetching black and gold sequin suit adding further glitz to the show. The Fairy Godmother sparkled just as brightly, ensuring the visual spectacle matched the enchanting story. The detailed set, designed by Phil Daniels, transported the audience seamlessly into the magical world of Cinders, in particular when the impressive horse and carriage miraculously appears to take her to the ball.

Intentional or not (we were not quite sure!), the Buns character felt slightly menacing but this added to the fun for us.

One clever moment was when Cinderella transformed from rags to ballroom gown with seemingly just wave of a wand– a feat that left many in the audience pondering how it was done (including one us momentarily!)

Pantomine at Buxton Opera House

The musical selection featured a delightful mix of old and new, catering to all ages. From 50s hits to the tunes of Cher, Tina Turner, Kylie and Olly Murs; the music had the crowd grooving in their seats.

Amy Cray Edgell, who played the Witch (also part of the Ensemble), particularly shone with her exceptional dancing ability and commanding stage presence.

Cinderella at Buxton Opera House offers a magical start to the festive season! With a stellar cast, wonderful costumes, and a detailed set, it’s a show not to be missed which all the family can enjoy.

Cinderella runs until Monday, 1st January 2024, with performances at various times. Tickets are available starting from just £21.50. For bookings, go to or contact the Box Office. Discounts/ concessions are available.

Buxton Opera House, Water Street, Buxton, SK17 6XN

T: 01298 72190

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