Alice/A Virtual Theme Park – Creation Theatre – Zoom  

The surreal and episodic nature of the Alice stories mean they adapt quite well to a single actor format. And adaptor/director Zoe Seaton has come up with some imaginative ideas such as having Tweedledum and Tweedledee played by one actor (Tom Richardson) with a mirror and Dharmesh Patel as the Mad Hatter wearing a puppet theatre head-dress and operating stick puppets within it. It is also arguably easier to do special effects digitally then in a theatre.

We, the audience, are invited (on laptops and PCs but not tablets or phones) to set off down the most famous rabbit hole in literature – our names and images, if we choose to switch the camera on, cascading through the mud with Leda Douglas as a thoughtful, troubled Alice. 

It’s a bit tedious to have to keep leaving Zoom meetings and rejoining in order to visit the various episodes – which you don’t all have to do in the same order, but it works. Vera Chok, in red is pretty arresting as the Queen of Hearts although the picture I got of her was very fuzzy and I have no idea whether that’s down to her band width or mine. There is also a problem – as with every piece of Zoom theatre I’ve seen so far – of sound and visuals not being synced.

Nonetheless it’s fun and lots of children in their various homes were clearly having a good time engaging in the interaction with, for instance, Annabelle Terry as a voluble Italian cook, Nicky Harley as the winsome White Rabbit and Colm Harley as an irritable March Hare. The hedgehog game at the Queen’s croquet party is good and the card trick at the end a bit of a tour de force.

Review by Susan Elkin