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Review of Finding Nemo Junior at West Suffolk College in Bury St Edmunds

I felt I’d thrown myself in at the deep end when I went to see a new show called Finding Nemo Junior.

It was a musical based on the Disney / Pixar juggernaut of a film that was released in 2003 and took millions at the box office.

But I dived straight in to this 50 minute production that has been created by Conservatoire East – the performing arts academy based at West Suffolk College.

Picture: Tony Kelly
Picture: Tony Kelly

So did it go swimmingly?

Well – I’d say so.

The production (expertly co-directed by Han Colthorpe and Erica Dupuy) started strongly and the cast made waves as they entered the stage for a big intro number that made you think you were watching the beginning of The Oscars.

The grand awards night in Hollywood is only weeks away but I didn’t have any time to think about that as I was soon in an ocean scene with colour watching a fast paced plot.

In a nutshell, the story is centred around the relationship between Nemo (a young clownfish) and his father Marlin.

Picture: Tony Kelly
Picture: Tony Kelly

After a falling out, Nemo ups and leaves the security blanket of the Great Barrier Reef and ends up in an aquarium in Sydney before deciding that his home is where the heart is.

It’s a tale of morals that grips you in its jaws and it’s very finny and funny throughout.

There are two companies who are performing this, but, the one I saw had Oliver Jenkins give a great performance as Marlin.

Oliver had the look of a young Richard E Grant and will be well on the way to creating his own LA story if he continues to perform like this.

Olwyn Viola (as Dory) and Anya Parry (Nemo) also gracefully floated across the stage throughout – so well done to them and the cast in general.

The moral of this fun family drama is to have fun in life, learn, be good, see the world, look after your family and if everyone works together in a positive way – then good things can happen.

There is certainly nothing fishy about that sentiment.

So go see it – you’ll have a whale of a time.

The show runs from February 7-10. Tickets can be purchased here.

Reviewed by John Nice.