Belt Up Theatre’s A Little Princess (2 stars)

This article is from 2012

Belt Up Theatre’s A Little Princess

Serena Manteghi is Sara Crewe in the adaptation of Frances Hodgson Burnett's A Little Princess

Unengaging adaptation of a timeworn classic

Young York company Belt Up Theatre have been the toast of the Fringe in recent years for their immersive, intensive renditions of stories new and old, but it feels like things have gone off the boil slightly with this staging of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s rather timeworn tale.

Serena Manteghi performs solidly but a little too earnestly as Sara Crewe, a precocious Daddy’s little princess at odds with her nasty piece of work of a boarding school teacher, Miss Minchin (a role tackled with aplomb and humour by a bearded Dominic Allen in a dress), and left in a pickle when her doting but ultimately cowardly father dies bankrupt.

There are some nice touches in the production, and as might now be expected from Belt Up there is some fun involvement for the audience – who, seated on cushions and low chairs around the edges of the room, represent the rest of the ‘girls’. But the acting is too often rather shrill, and ultimately the power of make believe that the story so exalts just doesn’t enliven this production.

C nova, 0845 260 1234, until 27 Aug, 6.30pm, £8.50–£12.50 (£6.50–£10.50).

Belt Up's Fringe 2012 - Interview Three: A Little Princess

Belt Up Theatre's A Little Princess

  • 2 stars

Join Sara Crewe as she is torn from her life in India in a journey from princess to pauper and left without her father in a foreign land. Listen to her tales and relish in the magic and the tragic beauty of her story. A stunning adaptation of Frances Hodgson Burnett's well-loved novel from the inimitable and…

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