REVIEW – Hi-De-Hi, Royalty Theatre, Sunderland

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HAPPY campers flocked to the Royalty Theatre to see the 80s classic sit-com Hi-De-Hi being brought to life on stage.

The cast did a superb job of whisking the audience away from a chilly Sunderland to the heart and warmth of a 1950s holiday camp.

The Royalty stage benefited from incorporating a younger cast into this final show of the season who breathed new life into the roles of the effervescent camp entertainers and their yellow coats.

However, it was the Royalty stalwarts who really shone.

Denise Page was excellent as Gladys Pugh. Her Welsh lilt was spot-on as she stepped into original actress Ruth Madoc’s shoes with aplomb. Her tannoy scenes are some of the stand-out sections of the show and are worth the ticket price alone.

All the colourful characters from the Bafta-winning TV series, which ran from 1980-88, are there, including Peggy Ollerenshaw, the humble chalet maid with the big personality.

Lorna Breeze struck just the right note with the character and did a worthy impression of original Peggy, Su Pollard.

The cast prepared for the show by taking part in holiday camp activities such as Glamorous Granny and Knobbly Knee contests and their passion for this show was palpable.

It looked like they were having good fun on stage which proved infectious.

Tickets are £7.50 or £6.50 concessions and are available in advance from Tourist Information Centre, tel. 565 2000.