THE future is bright if these shining stars have anything to do with it.

Peter Pan has landed in Southampton starring dozens of talented local youngsters, a few of whom will undoubtedly end up on the West End stage in the not too distant future.

We could all do with a little escapism, amongst Covid cancellation concerns and general Christmas chaos, and this wonderful retelling of J.M. Barrie's classic tale is just the tonic.

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Along with the Darling children, Wendy, John and Michael, we were transported to Neverland for the Christmas youth production at MAST Mayflower Studios.

The cast are universally exceptional, Peter Pan, Captain Hook, Tinkerbell, Tiger Lily and all the central characters impressing an enthusiastic audience. But it was one of the Lost Ones, young Olivia Rose Hollands as Tootles, who stole the show with a stunning singing voice, delightful comic timing and plenty of cute quips. We also enjoyed a wonderful comedic turn from Ben Reid as Smee.

The ensemble pieces were the undoubted highlight of a show which featured a mix of songs from the musicals and popular music. The likes of Happy, I'm a Believer and Livin' La Vida Loca went down a storm and by the time we reached Sweet Caroline the adoring crowd were swaying, singing along and having the time of their lives, myself and my seven-year-old daughter Poppy included.

Daily Echo:

A superb set manages to cleverly recreate everything from the Darling nursery to Neverland's Mermaid Lagoon and even The Jolly Roger with minimal manoeuvres.

With superb choreography and terrific timing, these skilled performers didn't put a foot wrong.

I only hope they are able to continue their run of what is a truly magnificent production, among an incredible festive trio of shows at the two Mayflower venues.

Daily Echo:

  • Peter Pan: An Awfully Big Musical Adventure continues until December 31.
  • Tickets are available from or by calling 023 8071 1833.