All doubts about the future of youth drama in Carmarthen were ceremoniously cast aside on Saturday 13th June at Queen Elizabeth High School. For our delight and entertainment Forge Juniors presented Disney’s Sleeping Beauty for two performances. And what a lovely experience it was.
We all know the old story of Maleficent, the wicked fairy, who has not been invited to the christening of Princess Aurora. Gifts are lovingly presented by the good fairies, but the party is interrupted by Maleficent who announces that the baby will prick her finger on a spindle and die. One good fairy tries to reverse this curse but instead declares that the Princess will not die but sleep for 100 years until woken by a kiss from a handsome Prince.
The King and Queen ban all spindles and the Princess grows up in the care of the good fairies until her 16th birthday. Then, as prophesised she pricks her finger on a spindle she has discovered, and falls asleep. Of course there is a happy ending. A handsome Prince comes along and Aurora is woken by his kiss. Hooray.
This production was indeed magical. The entire cast acted, sang and danced beautifully and with great conviction. Jessica Smith was an evil Maleficent with a powerful voice and the right amount of wickedness. Her good sister fairies were kind and loving to Aurora who was well played by Lauren Page. You could not find fault with any of the other actors from the birds and bears, and animals, the guests, the Goons, the other royalty, the handsome Prince and even the bucket. I was so impressed by their enthusiasm, their dancing and above all their concentration. Well done to Osian Rhys their Director, Sarah Beth Davies his Assistant, Catrin Lloyd the Musical Director and Millie Saddler the Choreographer. That was an excellent production team effort.
It was obvious that an incredible amount of work had gone into making this production look right. Set, costumes, props, sound, lights, hair and makeup all looked professional. Just a few small points – at times the lights seemed focussed on the audience and were just too bright and glaring, and perhaps the set was a little too complicated and could have been far simpler. Neither of these points detracted from the overall impression of an entrancing performance from Carmarthen’s talented young people. WELL DONE FORGE JUNIORS.