Adapted to the stage by Laura Lindow and directed by Maria Crocker, this fun-filled Christmas tale follows Hatty Rabbit (Beth Crame), a down on her luck kid given a once in a lifetime opportunity, becoming a sorcerer’s apprentice! Despite being based on the classic tale that’s been adapted numerous times before (most notably with the Nicholas Cage 2010 film), this version couldn’t feel further from what has come before it, and I mean that in the best way possible.
It is clear that a lot of heart and soul went into making this, both on and off stage, and the constant smile on my face leads me to believe that paid off. One of my favourite things about The Sorcerer’s Apprentice is the level of detail put into the costume and set design. Each costume is perfectly tailored to the characters and I don’t mean in size alone; each outfit fully embodies what that character is and complements the mannerisms and style of the actors.
Hatty’s chaotic ensemble of bright colours and stripes feels so natural with how chaotic they are themselves and the villain, Canopus Sly (Jessica Johnson), only becomes more sinister and well, sly, with the addition of her suit. As for the set design, it is clear how much time and energy was invested into this and everything is so well thought out. A personal highlight of me was the sorcerer’s workshop which had detail by the bucketload and a cool system of LED piping that snaked through the whole set.
The work off stage is only matched by the performances on it. Crame does excellent in the lead role as portraying this fun, lovable, and admittedly quite clumsy girl who you can’t help but root for throughout. Johnson is superb as the antagonist and I relished in every moment she appeared, oozing confidence and power. The cast works so well together and remains composed even when there are a few mishaps.
There is a lot to watch during Christmas, but I wholeheartedly recommend The Sorcerer’s Apprentice at Northern Stage if you want a jolly good time.
Also, Horrible Histories’ Rattus Rattus has a new contender for the best rat with Patrick Munday’s Rats.