Back in her younger days, Flea would watch the Disney version of Peter Pan almost every day.
I think there’s something magical about someone who never grows up.
Add pirates, swords and flying to the mix and you’ve pretty much got Flea’s perfect story.
This Christmas, I wanted something a little different to the local panto, so this weekend Flea and I went to the NIA in Birmingham to see Peter Pan – The Never Ending Story.
It’s a Peter Pan with a difference.
The story is narrated by an invisible Tinkerbell (it’s X-Factor alum Stacey Solomon, fact fans!) while the actors on stage tell the story through the medium of pop songs with the odd bit of opera thrown in.
It took a few minutes to get used to, and I must admit that ten minutes in I was thinking, “Oh God, it’s going to be bad….” but it’s actually really effective and let’s be honest there’s never a bad moment to be reminded just how amazing Duran Duran’s Wild Boys really is, is there? And Flea was caught quietly singing along to Madness when she thought nobody was looking. The second half of the show, in particular, was great.
When they’re not singing the cast are tumbling, doing stunts, flying around on harnesses, skydiving on stage, and generally performing their socks off. The choreography is really amazing, but it was the pirates and Indians with their acrobatic routines that had Flea and her cousin on the edges of their seats.
The performance is definitely child friendly, but there are the odd scary moments to be aware of if you have nervous children, including some very loud fireworks and a HUGE crocodile that my two companions spent five minutes reassuring each other wasn’t real.
We booked and paid for our tickets through Amplify, which is a little more expensive but meant we got to park right next to the arena, and had access to the hospitality suite which means a proper lunch, complimentary drinks and (miracle of miracles) a toilet with no queue!
Flea also got to meet the cast before the show, which was a real treat – although she was surprised to realise the cast aren’t English, but Belgian.
If I have one complaint about the show, it’s actually not about the venue of the performance. It’s with the audience.
The moment the story on stage finished, a minority of parents got up and started to leave, with their children. Honestly? If you’re the sort of person who can sit and watch someone sing and dance and act and work their butts off for two hours for your entertainment, and you can’t be BOTHERED to sit on your bottom for an extra five minutes to give them a round of applause, you shouldn’t be allowed through the doors of a theatre.
Peter Pan the Never Ending Story is touring the UK throughout December and January, and we really, really recommend it. Here’s a peek at what it’s all about: