Wendy and Peter Pan: 'It's a story of love, imagination and adventure – and those are themes that cross centuries and generations.'
- Gareth K Vile
- 26 November 2018
Festive fun and thoughtful themes for the Lyceum's Christmas show
J.M. Barrie's fantastic tale of boys who refuse to grow up, pirates and a vengeful crocodile has been a staple of the stage since the reign of Queen Victoria: despite its profound themes of loss and accepting adulthood, it offers a spectacular adventure and the romance of a tough fairy-tale. As the Lyceum's Christmas production, it fits with the venue's serious yet playful alternative to the pantomime: using the script by Ella Hickson, Eleanor Rhode's direction is inspired by its mixture of fun and resonance.
'I think the fact that, as storytellers, we keep returning to Peter Pan is a sign of how fundamental its themes are to us as human beings,' Rhode continues. 'It may not be set in the 21st Century, but it's a story of love, imagination and adventure – and those are themes that cross centuries and generations.'
'In Ella's adaptation, not only do the women carry the narrative, they also get to fight, to be vulnerable, to be brave, to be flawed, to be funny – in other words, they're brilliantly written characters at the heart of the story.'
Rhode sees Wendy and Peter Pan as a point of entry to the Lyceum's programme for all of the community. 'We don't want the theatre to feel like a precious place where you have to reverentially sit in the dark – going to the theatre should feel like an event where everyone is welcome.'
Rhode believes that this is crucial to the impact of the production. 'It will be spectacular when it all comes together, and the flying will be one of many things that will really bring this fantastical world to life on stage. We have a brilliant, multi-talented company, and there'll be live music, fast-paced sword fights, and more than a few surprises along the way. It's going to be amazing!'
Lyceum, Edinburgh, Thu 29 Nov–Sat 5 Jan, prices vary.