Robin Hood and the Lost Crown

Gryphon Theatre, 22 Ghuznee Street, Wellington

06/04/2010 - 17/04/2010

Production Details

Fun for boys and girls, Mums and Dads, Grandmas and Grandpas!

It’s holiday time in Nottingham and the Sheriff of Nottingham (Alec Rogers) has sent all his men off to the seaside. Not really! The fiendishly evil villain is simply setting a trap for Robin to fall into. Robin (Jonny Potts) has sent all his men off on holiday too, and only he and Maid Marian (Becky Wilson) remain. They are joined by the wandering minstrel Alana Dale (Alana Zivanovic) and together they decide to take the bait and try to outwit the sheriff and his none-too-bright sidekick Norman Duffer (Craig Geenty).

It is a tale of courage, Lost Treasure, and swords. It’s all go in Sherwood Forest as the men and women in Lincoln green rob the rich yet again.

With singing and dancing in true KKT fashion this new and very different version of the Robin Hood story is brought to you by the writers and producers of Little Bo Peep and the Cabbage of Doom.  

Tickets are $10.
Shows are 11am and 1pm Weekdays
and 11am Saturdays
from 6th to 17th April
at the Gryphon Theatre, Wellington. for full details.
Bookings phone 934 4068 

Humour, energy and animation

Review by Ewen Coleman [Reproduced with permission of Fairfax Media] 08th Apr 2010

The legend of Robin Hood stealing from the rich to pay the poor has taken many forms over the years, providing many writers with lots of material for creating action packed stories. In this production from Kapitall Kids Theatre, writer Dan Ashworth has used a very simple tale with which to develop his Robin Hood and the Lost Crown.

The riches this time that Robin Hood (Jonny Potts) has his sights on are in fact those of his archenemy, the Sheriff of Nottingham (Alec Rogers). Through a travelling minstrel Alana Dale Alana Zivanovic) Robin learns that the Sheriff has sent all his men on holiday, except for his dim-witted side kick Norm Duffer (Craig Geenty) and that the treasures are Robin’s for the taking. 

So, with Maid Marian (Becky Wilson) and Alana Dale in tow, he gets into the castle, only to find that this is just a fiendish plot for the Sherriff to capture Robin. After much arguing and fighting the Sheriff of Nottingham finally gets his comeuppance and Robin is the hero once more. 

There is lots of humour in the story and the professional and highly competent cast bring lots of energy and animation to their parts to bring the story alive. What limited interaction there is with the audience works well and although the song and dance routines, except for the opening and closing numbers, require more work this is a most enjoyable school holiday production. 


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The performers make it a happy experience

Review by John Smythe 06th Apr 2010

The rudimentary set of four free-standing flats (one lop-sided), perfunctorily painted to suggest the inside of a castle, sets our expectations low.  The opening song lacks lustre too for a moment then takes off as everyone finds their full voice.

A stolid Sherriff of Nottingham (Alec Rogers) – eyes turned inwards as he recalls his lines by rote, speaks them too slowly, mis-times the gestures and grimaces he’s clearly been told to add, all while walking meaninglessly from side to side for lack of any internalised motivation – is happily offset by a wondrously thick soldier, Norman Duff, inventively played with a light comic touch by Craig Geenty.  

Dan Ashworth’s often clever script makes a meal of explaining how the dastardly Sherriff has supposedly sent his men to the seaside to trick Robin Hood into grabbing the chance to retrieve the treasures that rightfully belong to the poor and downtrodden except Norman has had postcards from the seaside (because the men were angry at being tricked so went there anyway), so now Norman has got to pass himself off as a famous poet in order to gain Robin’s confidence and con him into taking on the heroic quest …

The other purveyor of Ancient English infotainment is troubadour Alana Dale – nicely played and sung by Alana Zivanovic – and the further complication (dedicated to allowing a cast size of five) is that the Merry Men have been given time off at another beach, leaving just Robin and Marion, with Alana, to fall for the bait …

Johnny Potts hits exactly the right heroic tone for a Robin Hood still given to getting the sulks and lacking in confidence when it comes to expressing his feelings for Marion. Wanting to take a holiday with Robin yet always ready for adventure, Becky Wilson’s Maid Marion is well played as a fully-fledged member of the Merry Men.

Apart from a dreadfully clumsy first set change – the flats are turned to suggest Sherwood Forest (well-painted) – director Rodney Bane keeps the story ticking and the comic business coming.

Other songs range from delightful – ‘Summer Holiday’ (I’m of the age) – to a painfully inept Sherrif’s rap, and a mimed song and dance routine that’s more Bollywood than Sherwood, to a brief rendition of the classic Robin Hood theme song (“… riding through the glen …”).  

What could be further developed is the audience participation. The opening morning audience is alert, switched on and ready to roll. All they get is a couple of chances to complete a rhyme and they get little thanks for it. With the need to get possession of a key becoming the climactic quest I’d have thought their involvement in a crucial way would be a given. Ideally the final battle of wits should involve rhyming with the kids set up to deliver the winning words.

The performers make it a happy experience.
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