Posts with the label Benidorm UK Tour
Showing posts with label Benidorm UK Tour. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Benidorm UK Tour. Show all posts

Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Benidorm Live (UK Tour), New Wimbledon Theatre | Review


Benidorm Live (UK Tour)
New Wimbledon Theatre
Reviewed on Monday 11th March 2019 by Olivia Mitchell 
★★★★

Camp, crude and cheesy, Benidorm Live has brought the popular TV programme to life in a fantastic way. Derren Litten's stage adaptation completely captures the feel-good essence of the programme and has the audience laughing out loud throughout.

Almost taking the form of an episode from the TV, Benidorm Live follows the staff and holidaymakers at the tattered and tacky beyond belief, Solana Resort in Benidorm. Famous faces from the series Liam (Adam Gillen), Mateo (Jake Canuso), Joyce (Sherrie Hewson), Kenneth (Tony Maudsley), Jacqueline (Janine Duvitski) and Sam (Shelley Longworth), fight to reveal and impress the undercover hotel inspectors who could lead to the shut down of the resort. The story is basic but extremely well put across; what the narrative lacks, is made up for with performance and wit.

Mark Walters' cleverly designed set, brings the hotel to life with cheer and brightness, featuring a pool side, Neptune's Bar, the hotel reception and the Blow'N'Go salon. The transitions from scene to scene are well done, especially when mini dance interludes draw the audience away from the set changes completely. By the end of the show, you almost forget you're not watching the TV, or even that you're not sitting on a Benidorm beach yourself. 



Whilst the hugely enjoyable design of the show is great, it's the utterly hilarious cast who really bring it to life. Sherrie Hewson prances about barking orders to no avail. As the sleazy but adored Mateo,  Jake Canuso is outstanding and he tries (and fails) to seduce the hotel's guests. Particularly impressive is the link to Canuso's past, where he shows off some of his sharp, supported dance.  Janine Duvitski gives one of the wittiest, most innuendo rife performances ever. Her play on words and general larger than life persona, makes her a definite audience favourite, gaining laugh after laugh. Adam Gillen's Liam is endearing and wonderful, as is his partner in crime, Kenneth, played as camply as possible by Tony MaudsleyAsa Elliot as himself, provides some great vocals.  As the middle-class holidaymakers who find themselves at the Solana when their dream hotel is overbooked, Tricia Adele-Turner and Bradley Clarkson give buoyant performances as Sophie and Ben.

Derren Litten's stage debut should be applauded as he creates a rowdy night out that is easy to follow but still highly entertaining. A saucy, seaside postcard of a show, Benidorm Live is sure to delight fans of the series and newbies alike as they take a carefree, innuendo-filled trip to sunny Spain. 

Benidorm Live is at the New Wimbledon Theatre until March 16th before continuing its tour.

Benidorm Live (UK Tour), New Wimbledon Theatre | Review

Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Tuesday, 20 November 2018

Benidorm Live (UK Tour), Bristol Hippodrome | Review


Benidorm (UK Tour)
Bristol Hippodrome 

Reviewed on Monday 19th November 2018 by Emma Gradwell
★★★★


After ten years on our television screens, the long running sitcom Benidorm has found a new home on stage as a national touring production. Written by Derren Litten, the result is a mix of familiar storylines and musical interludes which give us two hours of uncomplicated silliness. The show is largely driven by double entendres and the saucy seaside humour you will have come to expect. 

The show is led by six familiar actors from the television cast and the audience were very pleased to see them, with huge cheers to be heard as they appeared on stage for the first time. The storyline works for both fans of the original show and new audiences. 

Two middle class holidaymakers, Sophie and Ben (played by Tricia Adele-Turner and Bradley Clarkson), find themselves at the 3½ star all-inclusive hotel, The Solana, when their original hotel is overbooked – and they are not impressed. Bribery and seduction are the obvious answer when Hotel Manager Joyce Temple-Savage (Sherrie Hewson) decides they must be undercover hotel inspectors tasked with shutting them down. 



Jacqueline (Janine Duvitski), a member of the Swingers Association, and her very open-minded friend, ‘Gay Derek’ (Damian Williams), baffle the newcomers with their friendly charms. Duvitski is a master comedienne – and Jacqueline’s rendition of “Rubber Ball” at Karaoke Night is one of the shows highlights. There were even a few nods to Jacqueline’s late husband, Donald, and his penchant for their alternative lifestyle, which fortunately for us, Jacqueline is still thoroughly enjoying as a singleton. 

Adam Gillen’s Liam is as quirky and na├»ve as he is on screen, and his continued devotion to his absent father, Leslie, and his Solana family are charming. Tony Maudsley as Kenneth, owner of the on-site hair and beauty salon, ‘Blow and Go’, gives a slick comedic performance. His naughty slogan t-shirts are in full force, my favourite being ‘Mince, Wince, Repeat’. 

Stellar dance moves are provided by Jake Canuso (a former dancer) as barman and lothario, Mateo, and new staff member, Ricky (Will Jennings). Shelley Longworth as Travel Rep, Sam provides cabaret at Neptune’s Nightclub alongside Neptune’s own crooner, Asa Elliott, belting out some favourite holiday tunes. What was lacking was a live band, which for a production of this size was disappointing. 



The clever set design by Mark Walters took us from reception to poolside via the Salon and eventually to Neptune’s Nightclub for the second half. Director Ed Curtis pulls it all together seamlessly and at two hours, five minutes it doesn’t outstay its welcome. 

Benidorm Live is cheesy, camp and refreshingly unpolitical, and I came away still chuckling about Jacqueline’s pink pussy and the sausage in cider.


Benidorm Live runs at the Bristol Hippodrome until  24th November, before continuing its tour.

photo credit: Paul Coltas 


Benidorm Live (UK Tour), Bristol Hippodrome | Review

Tuesday, 20 November 2018