The one thing you can guarantee from a Merlin Theatre production is that it will be something special – and Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass certainly lived up to that expectation and more.
The play was this year directed by Anne Dimery, who has been involved in Merlin Theatre, Frome, productions for more than ten years.
After a lot of research, Mrs Dimery chose Alice as it was her daughter's favourite book and decided the most authentic adaptation, which combined the two books, was the 1948 Clemence Dane and Richard Addinsell version.
The first act plays out the classic tale of Alice who falls down a rabbit hole in her garden into a fantasy world of weird and wonderful creatures.
In the Saturday matinee, Alice was played expertly in the first act by Holly McPhee-Clarke, and Becky Hinde, in the second act as the older Alice in Through the Looking Glass.
Some of the creatures she encountered on her travels included the white rabbit, played brilliantly by Jess Nicholson, the Mad Hatter and the March Hare, who were very entertaining, played by Pete White and Dan Bolton, as well as Tweedledee and Tweedledum, played with lots of enthusiasm by Aynsley Minty and Marc Cox.
Other highlights included the Queen of Hearts croquet match and the Cheshire Cat, who was voiced by the wonderful David Hynds.
But what has to take high praise is the fantastic costumes, props and set design that the production has enjoyed.
The Cheshire Cat was a particular favourite among the audience, as was the Frog and Fish footman and the Caterpillar.
A big well done to all the creative team behind the play, with special mention of choreographer, Abi Holmes, musical director, Harry Burt, costume designer, Lucia Snell, Robin King for puppets and Becca Long, for set design.
It was a weirdly wonderful, thoroughly enjoyable play; it always amazes me how easily these young people take to acting and help produce an unforgettable performance. There are still some tickets left for the remaining performances, telephone 01373 461360 for more information.