THE sparkle on stage was matched only by the twinkle in Louie Spence’s eye last night, as a star-studded cast brought Cinderella, the most beloved panto of them all, to the stage of the Bristol Hippodrome.

With Suzanne Shaw playing a beautiful Cinderella, singing and dancing her way through the show, Liz Robertson as Fairy Godmother, the brilliant David Roper as Baron Brizzle and graham Hoadly and Paul Burnham playing the most appropriate ugly sisters ever seen, this high-budget pantomime had all the ingredients to make this a night to remember. A special mention must also go to Andrew Derbyshire, who was surely the most charming Prince Charming ever to grace the Hippodrome stage, but it was Andy Ford, returning for the fifth time to the Bristol panto, who really stole the show with his usual thigh-slapping humour, jokes and audience interaction.

The performance was slick and polished, and the large stage is perfect for all the glitz and glamour involved in such a high end performance; from two giant glitter balls to Cinderella’s enormous pumpkin, no detail was missed.

Children and adults were equally enthralled by the 3D screen utilised for the ‘It’s behind you’ ghost scene, although some high tech additions, such as the advertising screen at the start of the show and during the interval, were intrusive and much less welcome.

This production of Cinderella is spellbinding; Louie Spence’s camp comments and choreography, Suzanne Shaw’s pitch perfect singing and Andy Ford’s comic antics are everything you’d expect and more.

Cinderella continues its run at the Bristol Hippodrome until January 5, 2014.