St Gregory’s rendition of the timeless classic Beauty and the Beast moved through comedic, heartwarming and even harrowing moments seamlessly, keeping the audience entertained and moved for 90 minutes straight. 

The audience were so lucky to enjoy a showcase of talent from students across ages 11-18, and it was clear that the younger students were inspired by the older cast members’ commitment to their roles through the way that they reflect their energy and excitement onstage. St Gregory’s is an outstanding example of why youth theatre is so important in any community. Their performance shows how a creative outlet can be a pivotal experience for a young person, and why giving opportunities to every student is so vital.

There were many beautiful moments in this performance but the highlight for me was not any particular moment but the dedication to characterisation that each actor exhibited. Belle exemplified everything the original Disney princess stands for: she was smart, feisty, and kind, whilst bringing her own humourous twist to the classic character. Her singing voice was incredible with that beautiful Disney princess quality that you would hope to hear, and the ability to act through her voice in such a touching way.

The Beast managed to bring a gruff, animalistic quality to his character, which you could imagine is exceedingly difficult to achieve, and the transformation of his character through the development of his relationship with Belle was performed brilliantly. As we all know, onstage chemistry is the most awkward part of a school production, yet you could see that the pair approached this obstacle with professionalism and care, shown by the authenticity of emotion in their onstage relationship.

A pivotal aspect of Disney shows is always the joy and lighthearted fun that coincide with the more emotional moments, and the comedic pairing of Cogsworth and Lumiere brought that element to the show in a way you would not expect from a youth production. Cogsworth’s character was hilarious, and you could see the added extra moments that are so necessary to bring a show from just a reenactment of the script to a performance that keeps their audience engaged. Cogsworth’s character was perfectly paired with Lumiere’s, who somehow kept an amusing French accent for the entire show! Their witty back and forth was brought to life by their brilliant comedic timing, making their performance one to remember.

Overall, this production was magical, and the magic came not only from the sparkling performance of the cast, but from the spirit of the family of St Gregory’s Performing Arts.

Written by Sammy C, Year 13