It's hard to imagine a show capturing the spirit of Roald Dahl's literary world more perfectly than this one. From the instant a gaggle of boisterous brats explodes on to the stage singing "My mummy says I'm a miracle", the story of Matilda – a child prodigy unwanted by her odious parents – is brought colourfully, messily, musically to life by Matthew Warchus's production.
Comedian Tim Minchin and writer Dennis Kelly, authors of the music/lyrics and book respectively, evidently had a blast adapting it – the stage fizzes with naughtiness and classic Dahl putdowns (Twit. Maggot). "My Daddy says I should shut my cakehole," sings Matilda (a pitch perfect Cleo Demetriou, one of four girls cast in the role for the transfer), while a child fat with cake produces a burp seemingly capable of stopping traffic.
The villain in this stonking musical treatment of Roald Dahl's Matilda is Miss Agatha Trunchbull, headmistress, sadist and sometime Olympic Games hammer thrower.
Miss Trunchbull has a front larger than Selfridges. Her bra is not just an over-the-shoulder-boulder-holder. It may have been engineered by Brunel.
And her wart. All twitchy and hairy and big enough to snag a lasso. Here is a character to terrify tiddlers as much as Chitty Chitty Bang Bang's child catcher did 40 years ago.
The part of Matilda is played by four little girls who take turns in the title role. The show is a fabulous family fizzer. It has strong tunes, witty lyrics and enough 'eew' moments to satisfy the most revolting urchin.
A perfect show for the family or for adults, I would definitely go again. Tickets can be bought from most London ticket websites or from their site direct.
It all ends with the audience uncertain about whether or not to blub or cheer.