Posts with the label music
Showing posts with label music. Show all posts
Showing posts with label music. Show all posts

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Goldstone Live, Hippodrome Casino | Review


Goldstone Live
Hippodrome Casino
Reviewed on Sunday 2nd April 2017 by Olivia Mitchell
★★★★

Goldstone Live brings a group of stunning ladies with glorious voices together in their global entertainment company which provides sparkling entertainment for a number of various private events. This was Goldstone's first ever public event and it did not disappoint. 

With it's 54 Below vibes, the Hippodrome Casino was the perfect venue for this retro, glitzy evening. The audience were seated at tables with food and drink flowing which combined with the golden goody bags adorning the place and the warm lighting created an intimate atmosphere.

The stage is small but the whole thing was used to it's full extent with dances and sequins covering every tiny inch. The buzzing atmosphere of anticipation was prevalent from when the audience entered the venue and it certainly went up and up with every high energy performance!

The Goldstone trio Aimie Atkinson, Helen Kurup and Vicky Hoyles opened the show with a fabulous rendition of 'One Night Only' from the current West End hit, Dreamgirls and things only went up from there. The theme of the night was definitely glamour, with a level of glitz I can only dream of! The night was made up of three sets of varying styles and genres but each one was lively and full of energy. The girls put their own Goldstone spin on on every songs; performing pieces from artists such as  The Supremes, Beyonce and  Nicki Minaj. Their repertoire had something for everyone and I found myself dancing and singing along all night and just enjoying a truly wonderful evening of entertainment.

Along with the 'official' Goldstone girls, the night included some special guests who all fit in perfectly with soaring voices, stunning outfits and glorious personalities. Jodie Steele was a particular standout of the night but it was the overall high caliber of performance which made the night so enjoyable. There were no weak links and everyone gave it their all to create an outstanding evening of entertainment.

I can't review this concert without mentioning the little In The Heights reunion at the end where Gabriela Garcia, Stephanie Rojas, Aimie Atkinson, Genesis Lynea and Sarah Naudi performed a sizzling rendition of 'Lady Marmalade' which really brought the house down and exuded glee! 

The show closed in proper Goldstone style with golden dresses as far as the eye could see and an outstanding performance of 'Proud Mary' which I was tired just watching! Overall this was a perfect Sunday evening full of talent, glamour and endearing personalities and I hope one of many more public events put on by these crazily adept ladies! Congratulations to everyone involved for a magnificent performance and true embodiment of girl power!

For more information about Goldstone Live visit: http://www.goldstonelive.com

Goldstone Live, Hippodrome Casino | Review

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Monday, 20 March 2017

West End Live Lounge, Union Theatre | Review


West End Live Lounge
Union Theatre
Reviewed Sunday 19th March 2017 by Olivia Mitchell
★★

When I say last night was a perfect Sunday evening, I am not exaggerating at all. With the amount of talent that was in the room it was hard not to have a brilliant time! The West End Live Lounge at the Union Theatre was the first of what I hope become many concerts created by Shaun McCourt and Leigh Lothian. The premise of the concerts is that as many West End stars as possible are brought together to perform incredible music with all proceeds going to charity. There are no musical theatre songs to be heard so all performers are able to step out of their usual boxes and really explore and show off their musicality.

The star studded line up included: Marisha Wallace, Gabriela Garcia, Arun Blair, Tyrone Huntley, Phoebe Street, Kelly Agbowu, Natalie Green, Leigh Lothian, Matthew-Seadon Young, Sejal Keshwala, Laura Tebbutt, Nicola Avino, Iain Mattley, Paul Wilkins, Laura Mansell, Brady Isaacs Pearce, Jamal Andreas, Jonny Howe, Katie Brayben, Marcus Ayton, Gary Wood, Lauren Ingram, Adam Bailey, Oliver Savile and Andrew Bateup.

There were a number of lovely duets and trios as well as fabulous solos and the performers also got to show off their other musical abilities such as piano playing which was very impressive. The intimate atmosphere of the Union Theatre in Southwark was the perfect setting for the evening with the whole evening having a warm, laid back, friendly feeling. The stage, complete with sofas and a table added to this vibe and the overall mood was perfect for a relaxed Sunday.

The overall quality of performances was extremely high and every member of the cast and ensemble were flawless with wonderful song choices and joyous performances. There were a number of particular standouts for me. Firstly, Gabriela Garcia and Arun Blair who did a lovely, sweet, and harmonious medley of Rihanna and Sam Smith with a cheeky bit of Into The Woods mixed in! Their chemistry was evident and their voices just work so well together that it's a joy to see and hear them perform. Tyrone Huntley and Marisha Wallace were other standouts and were a theme of my weekend having seen Dreamgirls on Saturday (review coming soon!)

Tyrone's dulcet tones were perfect for the Michael Jackson hit 'Rock With You' and Marisha brought the house down and earned a well deserved standing ovation with her insanely good rendition of 'Natural Woman'. Natalie Green sang Sam Smith's classic, 'Lay Me Down' which was truly stunning.

The whole night was full of joy, friendliness and sweet, sweet harmonies. It was so lovely to see so many people come together to perform and raise money for UNICEF and I really hope there will be many more West End Live Lounges to come! Make sure to keep and eye out on Twitter to make sure you don't miss the next event which is sure to be as incredible and inspiring as this one!

Check out West End Live Lounge on Twitter: https://twitter.com/WElivelounge17


West End Live Lounge, Union Theatre | Review

Monday, 20 March 2017

Friday, 1 July 2016

Jeremy Jordan, Hippodrome Casino | Review

You know when you build something up so much in your head that it can't possibly live up to expectations? Last night was not one of those times. Yes I had built this concert up to a ridiculous level in my mind but the incredible Jeremy Jordan smashed every expectation and went above and beyond what I thought was humanly possible.

You may know him as the heart throb of tv from hits Smash and Supergirl or from his leading Broadway roles in Newsies and Bonnie and Clyde or maybe you're just hearing his name for the first time now.

Whichever it is, all you need to know is that Jeremy is one of the best, if not the best male singer; with a hilarious stage presence, magnetic personality and absolutely stunning voice, he's really the definition of the whole package.

Last night I got to witness this package all wrapped in a bow at the last of Jeremy's first ever London concerts, the fastest selling performances the Hippodrome Casino has ever seen! There's something really special about watching performers in these sort of venues because they're so intimate and you just know that every single person is there to support who their watching. The whole room was buzzing before Jeremy came on stage and the excitement could be felt all around, it didn't feel like there could be more joy but when Jeremy stepped on stage the whole room went crazy.

Jeremy opened the show with a hilarious parody of Everything's Coming Up Roses called Everyone's Come To See Me, starting the night on a high which only went up. Jeremy continued performing a mix of all his best songs as well as some originals which will be on his upcoming album, including a beautiful song written for his wife called Memories of Loving You. His infectious personality combined with his killer vocals made an unforgettable evening with jokes and anecdotes creating a wonderful relaxed evening. Jeremy's partner in crime for the night was his hilarious Musical Director Benjamin Rauhala who not only played magnificently but had everyone in hysterics throughout!

There's no way I can pick a favourite part of the concert because I was literally in love with every second of it but I couldn't write this post without mentioning the incredible cover of Take me or Leave Me which Jeremy and his beautiful wife sung (couple goals right!?) and also his medley of song requests. This truly showed off Jeremy's talent, singing clips of songs form Cats to Celine Dion all note perfect and just stunning. 

The amazing thing about Jeremy is not just his personality and talent but the way he connects with each song and makes the audience feel like they're experiencing every moment personally. Jeremy is an absolute star and deserves so so so much praise. For anyone reading this I advise you to watch all of the videos you can find of Jeremy, watch everything he's in and buy his album when it comes out! And Jeremy, if by any crazy twist of fate you're reading this, then I want to say thank you for an absolutely brilliant night and please please please come back to London very soon!

5 stars!

Jeremy Jordan, Hippodrome Casino | Review

Friday, 1 July 2016

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Samantha Barks Tour, Churchill Theatre | Review

Source: https://twitter.com/TheAlexEllison/status/742769269935616001
If you read this blog regularly or follow me on social media, you'll know that I am a huge Samantha Barks fan. Samantha is a singer and actress most well known for her role as Eponine in Les Miserables' West End cast, 25th anniversary concert cast and film cast. 

She has also starred in a number of shows such as City of Angels, Chicago, Cabaret and Oliver and has been working on a number of  films recently which are set to be released soon and has just released her self titled album under United Music. 

Samantha Barks Tour, Churchill Theatre | Review

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Monday, 16 May 2016

In Conversation With... Lily Frazer | In The Heights | Interview


Back in October, I took a little trip to the Kings Cross theatre after my lecture to watch In The Heights. I didn't really know what to expect because I'd only heard a few of the songs but I was utterly blown away and have been in love with the show ever since! Check out my review here

I recently reached out to Lily Frazer who plays Nina in the show and she has been kind enough to do an interview with me about all things In The Heights...


For those that don't know, can you explain a little about the storyline of In The Heights and how your character Nina fits into it.

Lily Frazer as Nina and Cleve September as Sonny

In The Heights shows a few days in the life of the people who live in Washington Heights. There's a lot of poverty and financial struggle. Rent is rising due to gentrification and everyone seems to be trying to 'make it out' and make their mark on the world. The Rosarios for example own a taxi company which is failing financially. Nina Rosario the daughter has become the hope of the neighbourhood after leaving the barrio to go to Stanford university on a scholarship. However because she's been trying so hard to juggle her school work and working to pay for the rest of her tuition she has been failing her exams and after losing her  scholarship has decided to take leave of absence. She obviously feels a huge amount of guilt and anxiety on the way home and feels as if she has let the whole community and most importantly her parents down. She's come home to tell her parents the news and to also to try and get back to her roots and that's where her story begins really. 


I know you saw the show on Broadway, in what ways is the West End production similar and different to it?

I didn't actually see the show on Broadway. (AN. I was having a moment writing that question, I thought I'd heard Lily say she'd seen the show on Broadway!) I was studying at Arts Ed in London when it was on Broadway but I remember everyone in college was still just as excited about it. The soundtrack and libretto in the library were always checked out by someone. So naturally years later when it came to London I was thrilled. 

As for the West End production the staging is in traverse rather than a traditional proscenium arch so the setting is more intimate I think and with the cast dancing in the aisles as well it allows the audience to feel submerged in the setting. Our theatre is unique! The Kings Cross theatre makes the whole experience quite magical. The audience enter along actual railway tracks and through the 'subway' onto our stage. 


You played Eponine in Les Mis who is quite a contrast to Nina to say the least! Do you prefer portraying the family orientated, upbeat dance atmosphere of In The Heights or the highly dramatic, deep emotional atmosphere of Les Mis?

I wouldn't say I prefer either. I like a challenge and both roles are equally as challenging for different reasons. I feel that both roles are equally as vocally and emotionally demanding. 


Throughout In The Heights there is the overarching theme of home and the importance of it. What three things remind you of home?

I get home sick after a holiday abroad. I'll be sat on my plane and we'll be landing and I'll get a first glimpse of the green fields through the clouds and I'll suddenly get really excited to feel the cold weather on my face. Hilarious because I hate being cold so this feeling doesn't last long! 

I grew up in the West Midlands so I get really excited when I hear someone with a Midlands accent! Especially if they're a fellow actor! Feel like I've found a team mate! 

The Eagles greatest hits was played on almost every car journey my family ever went on when I was a kid. So I can't hear The Eagles without thinking of my family! 


Congratulations on the Oliviers, 3 awards is incredible for the show and you looked stunning! How has it been for you seeing the positivity of critics and audiences alike? Did you know you were doing something special when rehearsals started?


Lily at the 2016 Olivier Awards
I’m so unbelievably proud. That sentence actually doesn't do justice to how I feel about In The Heights. Cast, Crew, Production, Creative team have been through a lot since we opened in October. And not always good times like the Oliviers. There's been a lot of hard work that's been done on and off stage to make this production possible which is why I have so much pride in it. 

Last year when we opened the theatre wasn't very well known so at the start of our contract a lot of us were worried people wouldn't come. Also with the show being described as a rap musical we were worried about our target audience because of course that's not all In The Heights is. Also if it wasn't for the sell out production at the Southwark Playhouse we might not be here. It's been great to watch the audiences get bigger and to hear more and more people talk about how much they love the show. Turning up to a little gig at the Theatre Café a few weeks ago and not being able to get in the door because it was so packed with fans wanting to show support was so touching! I am extremely proud to be apart of that. 


If you switched roles with anyone in the cast, who would you choose and why? (I think we'd all love to see Nina rap!)

Lily Frazer as Nina and Joe Aaron Reid as Benny

Daniela looks like so much fun! 

Also I think I'd love to play Benny. I think he gets the best of both worlds. He gets to rap and dance but also gets to sing some beautiful love songs with Nina. Jammy! 


As someone who studied and went straight into a West End show, what advice would you give for anyone currently at university hoping to get into the performing arts industry?

I did a degree course at Arts Educational Schools in Chiswick. So I'm not sure if you would call it a university. 

Before I got accepted into ArtsEd when I was studying for my A levels a lot of teachers told me to go to university and study drama or Theatre Studies which after doing my own research wasn't the right for the kind of actor I wanted to be. I'm very proud of my degree but I'd say that my training at ArtsEd and the connections the school gave me were key to my success in the industry. Not only is the training impeccable but I would never have had an audition for Les Miserables if I wasn't given the opportunity to audition in front of casting directors when they were invited to audition us in my final year. You need to really do your research on exactly what you're going to get out of your training and more importantly what YOU want to achieve at the end. Eg. Do they provide a showcase or a show at the end of your third year? Do they invite agents and casting directors? Do they specialise in one area of musical theatre or all three? I was lucky in that Arts Ed pride themselves on preparing you so well for everything! If theres something I wish I'd done more of though whilst I was training would be to take class out of school hours to broaden my training. Take class outside of school hours. Get a head start. Always be one step ahead of your classmates and take everything that your teachers tell you with a pinch of salt. Criticism is good for you but don't let it destroy you! Make up your own mind. Take inspiration from other performers but directly comparing yourself to others is poisonous! Don't do it! I had to learn that the hard way. I could talk about this all day but I'll stop now! 


Finally, for someone deciding whether to see In The Heights, what 5 words do you think best sum it up?

Olivier 

Award

Winning

Breakthrough

Musical 
;) 


I want to say a huge thank you to Lily for taking the time to answer these questions. The show is unbelievably brilliant and Lily is wonderful as Nina. Please, if you can get to the Kings Cross theatre, go and see In The Heights! 

Also, keep and eye out on RewriteThisStory for some more In The Heights themed posts which are coming up! My original review of the show is here!

Interview by Olivia Mitchell, Editor

In Conversation With... Lily Frazer | In The Heights | Interview

Monday, 16 May 2016

Sunday, 3 April 2016

Samantha Barks, St. James Studio | Review

It has been 20 hours since Samantha Barks stepped on the St. James Studio stage and I am still buzzing. I have been a fan of Sam since she was first on 'I'd Do Anything' and since then I have followed her career and been lucky enough to see her perform several times but this was a very different experience to anything else I've watched Samantha in previously.

Samantha Barks, St. James Studio | Review

Sunday, 3 April 2016

Saturday, 27 February 2016

Tori Kelly, O2 Academy Brixton | Review


So this blog post has really been four years in the making. After years of being a fan but never being able to go to a concert for various reasons, yesterday it finally happened, I got to witness the incredible Tori Kelly in action and I don't think I'll ever get  over how amazing it was.

To set the scene, the crowd was already buzzing from Samm Henshaw's amazing opening act when Tori came onto the huge stage of the Brixton Academy, and that buzz stayed from the moment the queen stepped on stage to the moment we left the theatre.  Tori's voice filled the whole place and her flawless technique and stage presence made me unable to take my eyes off of her. Everything seemed so natural, from the way Ms Kelly moved around the stage, to the way she used her pauses between songs to relish in the moment.

The set list for this concert was absolute perfection, with Tori belting nearly every song from her album, plus some of her older songs, such as the fan favourite 'Dear No One' and a brilliant cover medley, featuring PYT (with THAT riff of dreams included!) Tori hit every note with ease and her vocal ability and prowess was shown numerous times, with unblemished riffs, sultry low notes and etherial high notes.


I think its always been Tori's realness that has made people fall for her and that was truly the case last night. Tori somehow managed to make a huge venue feel intimate and managed to connect with everyone in the audience as if she were only singing to them. Not only that, but the whole concert felt like a party with friends, everyone there had a common love, admiration and support for  Tori so for me at least, it really felt like we were just proud to be watching someone we love on stage. You could really see how happy Tori was on stage and that happiness really translated to the audience.


The thing which baffles me about this curly-haired beauty, is how she can be both angelic with her R&B vibes but also have such swagger that if she started rapping it would be completely normal and no one would bat an eyelash. This is just testament to how talented Tori is, and I hope she gets every success in the future, because that talent, kindness and humble personality, deserves incredible things (just like it deserved the Grammy that was robbed from it...! In my opinion at least!) 

If you ever get the chance to see Tori in concert, please take it! I guarantee you'll leave feeling uplifted and in awe. One day it would be amazing if I could work with Tori and maybe sometime I will (it's on my bucket list to sing with her so fingers crossed!) But whether I get to or not, Tori has truly influenced my life and I'm so appreciative that she is there to be somebody for me to look up to and aspire to.

"Don't quit your daydream"

Tori Kelly, O2 Academy Brixton | Review

Saturday, 27 February 2016

Monday, 1 February 2016

Lucie Jones, Waterloo East | Review



The Waterloo East theatre was host to an incredible one night only cabaret from Lucie Jones last night and I'm sorry to rub it in your faces but you missed an epic night if you weren't there!

Lucie entered the stage in a sparkling silver dress and immediately belted out the Annie classic, Tomorrow, wowing the crowd from the get go.

After a number of hilarious anecdotes, we got to the X Factor days when Lucie introduced Anton Stephans who belted out a beautiful song and Lucie (along with some audience participation) performed Sweet Child of Mine.

As the night continued, Lucie sung songs that had been prominent throughout her amazing career such as Somebody To Love, Bring Him Home and an acoustic version of Poker Face (complete with unexpected harmonies!!)

Samantha Barks was another guest who joined Lucie on stage to sing an acoustic version of Justin Bieber's Sorry, which I NEED to be released as a single!! Samantha then sung a soulful jazz number, which was, of course, absolutely stunning! Danyl Johnson was the final guest, who, with a belt-tastic duet of Bridge Over Troubled Water made me fall a little bit in love!

A personal favourite of the evening was the hilarious Musical Theatre Boys song which had me in extremely ugly hysterics! Lucie's bubbly personality had the whole audience laughing throughout and by the end of the night it really felt as if we had all bonded during this intimate performance. The closing number With You left everybody speechless and was a fantastic end to a fantastic night.

Lucie is truly a force to be reckoned with, she's not only got the pipes to sing anything and everything, but her magnetic personality and natural personality, along with stunning sparkly dresses, make her a performer you just can't help but love.

If you want to witness the hurricane of amazingness that is Lucie Jones, you can watch her in the upcoming performances of Legally Blonde at the Leicester Curve!

Lucie Jones, Waterloo East | Review

Monday, 1 February 2016

Monday, 19 October 2015

Shoshana Bean Concert, The Singer's Lounge | Review

On Sunday 4th October I had the pleasure of going to the wonderful Singer's Lounge, hidden below Pizza Express in Covent Garden to watch Shoshana Bean who had returned to London following a sold out run at the Hippodrome to perform a newly revamped show for an extremely excited set of audiences over 3 nights. 

Despite watching Shoshana online and listening to her albums for years, this was the first time I had seen her in concert, and with a 54 below vibe where you can order food and drinks whilst listening to some amazing music, the intimate venue provided the perfect atmosphere to witness the amazingness of Ms Bean.

Shoshana Bean Concert, The Singer's Lounge | Review

Monday, 19 October 2015