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Russian Ice Stars presents the Snow White on Ice at the Orchard Theatre in Dartford

Well the audience was definitely all of a twizzle with what can only be described as a mixture of ballet, ice dancing/skating, aerial acrobatics, pantomime and fun as the Russian Ice Stars perform Snow White on a stage transformed into a winter wonderland.

The Orchard Theatre, Dartford, has certainly come up trumps with this production which appeals to both a young and not so young audience.

A cast of world, European and Olympic skaters perform the traditional tale of the beautiful princess Snow White, played by Valeriia Vorobeva, falling foul of her evil stepmother, Queen Driena, played by Svetlana Kuprina.

Ekaterina Boki playing a duck in Snow White on Ice by the Russian Ice Stars
Ekaterina Boki playing a duck in Snow White on Ice by the Russian Ice Stars

It's hard to believe 'evil' can be portrayed so well just by incredible dancing and hand movements without a word being spoken.

The princesses' birthday gives an excuse for lavish celebrations with dancing, hoop-spinners and fantastic aerial acrobatics, which raised quite a few oos and aahs. The jolifications come to an end when the Queen asks her mirror who is the fairest in the land. The huntsman takes Snow White into the forest to kill her but instead lets her go.

Trying to find shelter in the forest, she comes across the home of the dwarves who take pity on her and let her stay with them. Good excuse for lots of stomping, axe swinging and drunken dancing. I was expecting them to break out into Hi Ho, Hi Ho any minute.

Three times the evil queen tries to kill her using an ever-tightening belt, a poisoned comb and finally the rosy apple. But Prince Charming (champion figure-skater Valdis Mintals) comes to the rescue in a dazzling display of skating and dance to save the day.

The story is narrated by Rustie Lee as the Fairy News Reporter, who seemed to have a bit of a problem with her antenna causing much hilarity which lead to a fit of the giggles as she bantered with the audience.

The good queen in Snow White on Ice by the Russian Ice Stars
The good queen in Snow White on Ice by the Russian Ice Stars

Added to this and much to our amusement, being a non-skater, she had to carefully make her way across the ice wearing rather large sturdy boots to give her dialogue and then make her way slowly and carefully back off the stage. Maybe the large wings help with balance!

I particularly liked the energetic antics of the Queen's pet crow Toppa (Anton Smirnov) and the two ducks - albeit it was only after a half-time discussion that I actually found out they were ducks as I thought (as did a few others) they were rabbits. It was the "bob" that confused me.

Having been a big fan of BBC's Dancing on Ice, I certainly kept an eye out of for correct landings, positioning, travelling across the ice during spins and beautiful shapes and I was not disappointed.

I wondered whether the production, without accompanying speech, would appeal to the whole family but using such a well-known story, wonderful music, and of course the excellent skating, I need not have worried.

I asked a couple of youngsters whether they were enjoying the production. The replies were "fantastic" and "brilliant" - what more can I say!

The show will be at The Orchard Theatre until Saturday, May 16, 2pm and 7pm, with tickets priced £15 to £27. To book tickets or for information visit www.orchardtheatre.co.uk or call the Ticket Office on 01322 220000.

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