I was invited to the press night of ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory The Musical’ at London’s New Wimbledon Theatre. Running until 1st July at New Wimbledon Theatre in London before continuing their UK Tour, which runs until February 2024. This is a new production of the successful West End and Broadway musical which is an adaptation of the much loved Roald Dahl book. Featuring memorable songs from the original 1970’s film (‘The Candy Man’ and ‘Pure Imagination’), with all new numbers from the award-winning songwriters of Hairspray.
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So what is Charlie and the Chocolate Factory The Musical Show all about? Find out everything you need to know about the show and UK tour!
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a musical adaptation of Roald Dahl’s classic novel, featuring songs by Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman. The show follows the adventures of Charlie Bucket, a poor boy/girl who luckily wins a golden ticket to visit the mysterious and wonderful chocolate factory of Willy Wonka. Along the way, we meet four other children who are not so well-behaved and learn some valuable life lessons about greed, honesty, and kindness. We take a journey through the Chocolate Factory with Wonka and the Golden Ticket Winners, who will win the ultimate prize of a lifetime of sweets and chocolate?
All of the cast are a real credit to the show and deliver impressive performances. Charlie, who is played by a rotating cast of young actors, was played by a girl Amelia Minto on this occasion. She was incredible, her innocence and wonder are infectious. So confident and completely believable in her role as Charlie Bucket.
Willy Wonka played by Gareth Snook was brilliant, he had so much personality and charm which was perfect for this role. He was funny too and perfectly quirky as you’d expect from any Wonka! A real credit to the show.
I wasn’t sure what to expect with the other Golden Ticket winners being played by adults, as traditionally they have been played by children, but they were cast perfectly. Each actor bringing their characters to life with humor and charm. I was really impressed.
The whole cast were brilliant, right down to the Oompa Loompahs, although they didn’t look as I would have expected, all dressed in silver rather than brightly coloured orange… they really delivered some brilliant and fun songs with great choreography.
Credit: Johan Persson/
My thoughts on the show
I was expecting pure magic from the staging, but it was rather simple and unimaginative, relying mostly on projections and small props to create the magical world of the factory. This was a real shame as it could have been made so much more magical, as I think most people would expect when seeing this show. The first act is quite slow, as it takes a while to introduce all the characters and set up the plot, but the second half in the factory is great fun. I did love the scene with the Squirrels especially when Veruca was sorted as a ‘Bad Nut’. This was a great piece of staging and one of my favourite parts of the show.
Overall, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is a fun and entertaining musical, that fans of the book and movie will love. It has a hugely talented cast, some of your favourite songs from the movie, some great light hearted comical lines and a heartwarming message. However, it could have been so much better if it had more imaginative staging, especially inside the Chocolate factory. It is a good show and a very enjoyable one, but sadly not a great one.
Everything you need to know to book tickets for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory:
Meet The Cast & Team
- Gareth Snook – Willy Wonka
- The role of Charlie Bucket will be shared by Amelia Minto, Haydn Court, George Hamblin & Jessie-Lou Harvie
- Kazmin Borrer – Veruca Salt
- Teddy Hinde – Mike Teavee
- Robin Simoes Da Silva – Augustus Gloop
- Marisa Morgan – Violet Beauregarde
- Michael D’Cruze – Grandpa Joe
- Kate Milner Evans – Grandma Josephine / Mrs Gloop
- Christopher Howell – Grandpa George / Mr Salt
- Emily Winter – Grandma Georgina / Mrs Beauregarde
- Victoria Nicol – Mrs Pratchett / Ensemble
- Leonie Spilsbury – Mrs Bucket / Mrs Teavee
- Ewan Gillies – Jerry / Ensemble
- Lucy Hutchinson – Cherry / Ensemble
- Completing the company are Lydia Bradd, Darcie Brown, Josh Donovan, Patrick King, Jodie Knight, Jonathon MacDonald, Katherine Picar, Ty-Reece Stewart, Lewis Rae, Emma Robotham-Hunt, Natasha Volley and Morgan Scott.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory The Musical Tour Dates and to book:
- Wimbledon, New Wimbledon Theatre – Fri Jun 23 – Sat Jul 01 2023
- Manchester, Palace Theatre – Tue Jul 04 – Sun Jul 30
- Sunderland, Empire – Wed Aug 02, Sun Aug 13
- Southampton, Mayflower Theatre – Wed Aug 16 – Sun Sep 03
- Hull, New Theatre – Wed Sep 06 – Sat Sep 16
- Bristol, The Bristol Hippodrome – Wed Sep 20 – Sun Oct 08
- Birmingham, Hippodrome – Tue Oct 17 – Sun Nov 05
- Liverpool, Empire Theatre – Wed Nov 08 – Sun Nov 26
- Dublin, The Bord Gais Energy – Dec 05 2023 – Jan 07 2024
- Glasgow, Kings Theatre – Jan 23 2024 – Feb 04 2024
What age is suitable for the show?
Age guidance 7+ years.
What is the expected running time?
2 hours 30 minutes including interval.
I was invited to the press night of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory The Musical but all thoughts and opinions are strictly my own.
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