Grimm Tales


A charming collection of eight timeless fairytales told with a quirky twist was a sure way to end QTC’s 2010 season on a high.

Presented by Queensland Theatre Company
Cremorne Theatre, QPAC

11th November 2010

A charming collection of eight timeless fairytales told with a quirky twist was a sure way to end QTC’s 2010 season on a high.

The folk music and energy levels of the cast provided a festive feel – a great lead up to the merry season of Christmas. The mind-blowing set and lighting design I’m sure will make this show a sell-out for audiences of all ages.

There was the gore of Ashputtel (the original Cinderella) when the two ugly sisters cut their feet to fit the slipper and the enchantment of Snow White when she is given the kiss of life by Prince Charming. And judging by the opening night audience’s reaction, the shocking parts of the tales will probably frighten the adults more than the children! As Baz McAlister stated in the program, “fairytales were never meant to be solely for children; they have always skated close to some macabre and very adult themes like violence, cannibalism, murder and witchcraft”.

A solid casting of talented performers ensured every story was delivered with great comedic-timing and fun. Opening with the more sombre tale of Hansel and Gretel, quite fitting with the recent GFC, mother and father decide it best to lead their starving children into the forest and save themselves. You know the rest. While it was mainly matters of serious concern, Scott Witt’s duck prompted some serious belly-laughs from the crowd.

Eugene Gilfedder had us laughing with his role as Sexton in The Golden Goose, and continued to deliver the hilarity as the wicked step-mother and the Wolf. His ability to draw the audience in and allow them to feel like they are being taken on a journey with the cast was just right for this piece.

Lucas Stibbard was another brilliant comedian and the quite the puppeteer as Dummling and as a dwarf. Stibbard demonstrated his impressive versatility as an actor in his changing roles. Dan Crestani and Witt joined Stibbard in playing all seven dwarfs. They received a roaring round of applause as they role swapped swiftly and cleverly when dealing with Snow White.

Crestani shone as the goat from The Magic Table, The Gold Donkey and the Cudgel in The Sock. His physicality and sound effects were immensely entertaining. He was definitely channelling his inner goat. He also pulled off a great display as a dead hare!

Melanie Zanetti, in my experience, is always a joy to watch and lived up to this expectation in many roles during the night. Highlights were her as Gretel and Snow White.

Emma Pursey and Liz Buchanan were at their best as the ugly sisters. Although not ugly, they lived up to the jealous and evil siblings’ ways. 

Musicians Sallie Campbell, Noah Cunningham and Phil Slade performed with some weird and wonderful instruments and were the soul of the show.
Each story had its own uniqueness, like the impressive trickery in Little Red Cap when it came to the wolf devouring Grandma and Red Cap. Moments like that were a visual delight, and it was thanks to lighting design by David Walters and set design by Greg Clarke who made it happen. Lighting effects were particular spectacular, especially when creating fire on several occasions. The wooden set with trap doors, caves and many levels and layers provided the perfect scene for all tales.

Costumes were a delight and dress-maker Vicki Martin showed her talents as a seamstress in Ashputtel’s and the step-sisters’ stunning dresses.
Don’t miss out on this taste of traditional fairytales and what they’re really all about!

Grimm Tales is showing until the 11th December 2010

Bookings at

Anne-Marie Peard

Anne-Marie spent many years working with amazing artists at arts festivals all over Australia. She's been a freelance arts writer for the last 10 years and teaches journalism at Monash University.

Anne-Marie Peard

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