This week, the critically acclaimed Matthew Bourne cut right to Southampton’s Mayflower Theatre with mesmerising impact, bringing with him a revival of the world’s most famous pair of hands.

The modern-day fairytale of Edward Scissorhands tells the story of a heartbreakingly lonely figure. However, this stunning all-dance performance from leading company New Adventures, does nothing but ignite feelings of warmth for its audience from beginning to end. By encompassing real emotions of friendship, love, isolation, and loneliness Bourne creates a strong sense of empathy.

As well as the performance, the audience were graced with a curtain raiser from the Hampshire Youth Dance Company offering some outstanding and high quality examples of upcoming and young talent from around well respected HYDC. (read more…)

With just a four-week period in which to devise and learn the piece, the cast (lead by Liam Mower of Billy Elliott fame) proves that Bourne carefully and prestigiously selects dancers who are at the top of their game.

1. Edward Scissorhands press shot. Photo credit Hugo Glendinning
Dominic Lamb & Ashley Shaw starring as Edward Scissorhands & Kim in the New Adventure production

Although the production very much follows the narrative of one character’s journey, it cannot be questioned that what Matthew Bourne does here, is create a unique and special character in every single one of his cast. From the sweet-natured and misunderstood Edward, to the solemn Reverend Evercreech, each performer has a intimate tale to portray through their movement. The range of potential within this show is astounding.

In the same way that a Michelin Star restaurant gives you an array of the smallest, yet most incredible food that primes your palette and leaves you with a taste for more, through the smallest movement within their characterisation, the New Adventures dancers leave you hooked.

Upon being asked what qualities are required of a New Adventures performer, Associate Artistic Director Etta Murfitt described, “someone who is versatile, willing to make a fool of themselves, with a passion not just for dancing, but for acting and storytelling too.”

It is this combination of raw dancing talent, strong characterisation, and subtle humour that builds a production which really is something special.

What many choreographers do is manage to capture an audience for a night, whereas what Bourne manages so meticulously to do, is create a connection with every single person in his audience. With Bourne it’s all about the development of a relationship.

Character and emotion is built in conjunction with the beautiful, original soundtrack from Danny Elfman and Terry Davies, and yet this audience is possibly more drawn-in through the rare and poignant moments of silence.

Staying in Southampton’s Mayflower Theatre until Sunday the 7th, this magical, family orientated performance of Edward Scissorhands is not one to be missed.


Tickets for Edward Scissorhands (Tuesday 3 – Saturday 7 March) are on sale from Mayflower Theatre Box Office tel: 02380 711811 or online at Ovation Restaurant bookings: 02380 711833

Originally written by: Alannah Crouch