REVIEW ROUND-UP: The Boy Who Fell Into A Book, Stephen Joseph Theatre, Scarborough

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What if you could hurtle headlong into your favourite story?

Alan Ayckbourn’s The Boy Who Fell Into a Book explores this tantalising idea, tumbling our young hero wide-eyed into the pages of his favourite detective novel and an expedition through the stories on his bookshelf.

�  Tony Bartholomew   07802 400651/mail@bartpics.co.uk 18th July 2014  PICTURE COPYRIGHT TONY BARTHOLOMEW ALL PICTURES SUPPLIED TO THE STEPHEN JOSEPH THEATRE FOR USE IN PRESS,PUBLICITY FOR THIS PRODUCTION AND FOR USE ON ALL IN HOUSE PUBLICATIONS AND WEBSITES.  Stephen Matthews as Rumplestiltskin in The Boy Who Fell Into A Book.

� Tony Bartholomew 07802 400651/mail@bartpics.co.uk 18th July 2014 PICTURE COPYRIGHT TONY BARTHOLOMEW ALL PICTURES SUPPLIED TO THE STEPHEN JOSEPH THEATRE FOR USE IN PRESS,PUBLICITY FOR THIS PRODUCTION AND FOR USE ON ALL IN HOUSE PUBLICATIONS AND WEBSITES. Stephen Matthews as Rumplestiltskin in The Boy Who Fell Into A Book.

Evelyn Hoskins plays a charmingly enthusiastic Kevin, the hero of our tale and smart sidekick to Rockfast Slim, a detective who relies on “kaboom kapow” to punch his way out of a sticky situation.

Every story needs a villain and Katie Birtill’s Monique is delightfully evil, providing glamour and immorality in equal proportions.

The infinite variety of characters Kevin encounters are richly played by Natasha J Barnes, John Barr and Stephen Mathews breathing comedic life into even the most prosaic of books ( The Beginner’s Guide to Chess).

As you would expect, this is a witty and astute production that clearly appeals to an adult audience; however, the big surprise of the night for me was the relatively small ratio of children in the audience. This is far too engaging for a young bibliophiles to miss out on.

Kevin’s adventure held our five-year-old daughter spellbound and as I write this she’s spinning around me singing the title track to Eric Angus, Cathy Shostak and Paul James’ infectious musical adaptation.

More impressively our 10-year-old son, who practically has to be tied to a chair to get him to read a book, was writing his own review. Given that this production has made him the boy who fell into a play, it seems appropriate that I let him give the final verdict: “Funny, exiting, adventurous and odd. I like the gangsters and their guns the best, the fairy tale was really funny and the costumes are really clever. I really want to go and see it again.”