Puss in Boots (4 stars)

Puss in Boots

Musselburgh panto ripe with juicily rewritten songs and local references

Puss comes to Musselburgh in a pantomime that has just about everything you could wish for: a genuine sweetie shower (one of the few left); songs ancient and modern; a great dame; and references so local that you won’t get them unless you live in EH21.

Americans are not renowned for their ability to get pantomime. But it seems that, at his first attempt, American-born Tim Licata – best known as the clowning artistic director of Plutôt la Vie – has got it spot on.

He is blessed with a great script from Philip Meeks which has been honed into a truly local affair. Isabella Jarrett’s Wicked Witch Wysteria is holding Musselburgh to ransom. She wants to marry Tom Freeman’s numpty King McMuckletts, while Stephen Docherty’s throaty Dame Doris Dimple has to make tattie scones for Wysteria’s ogre son, Rumbletum.

The juicily rewritten songs shine through, particularly when Kim Shepherd’s Princes Fiona gets her larynx round them. It’s not faultless – the pace and ebullience need to pick up in the opening scenes – but for a show of this budget it achieves well above its aspirations.

Brunton Theatre, Musselburgh, until Sat 5 Jan

Puss in Boots

The Brunton's panto for this year tells the tale of the smartest cat in Musselburgh, with the usual mix of silly characters, local colour and popular songs.

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