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

Wednesday, 20 April 2022

Matthew Bourne's Nutcracker (Tour), New Victoria Theatre | Review


Matthew Bourne's Nutcracker
New Victoria Theatre
Reviewed on Tuesday 19th April 2022 by Angie Creagh-Brown
★★★★

The Nutcracker Suite is an old and much beloved family Christmas favourite. Matthew Bourne's version, however is a somewhat different take on the classic.

What can I say about it? Well it was just wonderful!!! The New Victoria Theatre is a large, modern and inviting building, which at this performance welcomed an audience of all ages; there were some young children (well-behaved) and the ambience was happy and inviting, a taste of the sweet treat evening to come.

Bourne takes the original story of a well to do family celebrating Christmas Eve with friends and family and turns it completely round; his version starts in an orphanage, the cast are dressed in grey, the scenery is grey - no light, no joy. The teenage children are preparing to 'enjoy' their meagre Christmas Eve and are joined by the owner, Dr Dross, danced by Danny Reubens, his wife the Matron, Daisy May Kemp, son Fritz, Dominic North and their very spoilt daughter Sugar, Ashley Shaw.

The children manage to find a Nutcracker, which had been locked away in a cupboard, and they escape to a wondrous scene of falling snow, ice-skating and snowballs. To add to their excitement the Nutcracker miraculously changes from a toy to a handsome, well-muscled and talented young man, (Harrison Dowzellto the delight of the children and the leading lady.

The ensemble dancing was lovely, there were comic moments, surprises and hints of jealousies to come. The dancers were performing with large smiles on their faces, which in turn put joy onto the faces of the audience.

Act Two opens with a kaleidoscope of colour which is The Road to Sweetieland. Clara, beautifully danced by Cordelia Braithwaite, is desperately trying to gain entrance to Sweetieland aided by the The Cupids, wonderfully portrayed by Enrique Ngbokota and Shoko Ito. She is still dressed in her undergarments and they find a pretty dress for her, but it does not compare in any way to that worn by her nemesis, Sugar.

There is a lot of humour in this act. Superbly bright costumes and a plethora of well-known sweets dancing wonderfully. It's a visual treat like no other.

The cast is very diverse, which would mirror the children in an orphanage. The story has been re-written in a modern way. This means it would possibly not be suitable for very young children on whom the innuendoes would be lost, but in terms of aesthetics it's sure to appeal to all ages.

The staging, set design, lighting and costumes all added wonderfully to the most enjoyable evening which finished with a standing ovation and joy abounded both on the stage and in the auditorium.

The Nutcracker plays at the New Victoria Theatre until 23rd April

photo credit: Johan Persson

Matthew Bourne's Nutcracker (Tour), New Victoria Theatre | Review

Wednesday, 20 April 2022

Wednesday, 15 September 2021

Joanne Clifton to play Morticia in The Addams Family UK & Ireland Tour



Aria Entertainment and Music & Lyrics are delighted to announce that Joanne Clifton will play the role of Morticia Addams in the UK and Ireland tour of THE ADDAMS FAMILY, A Musical Comedy. The tour will open at Theatre Royal, Nottingham on 5 November 2021.

 

Joanne will be joining the previously announced, Cameron Blakely (Gomez Addams), Scott Paige (Uncle Fester), Kingsley Morton (Wednesday Addams), Grant McIntyre (Pugsley Addams), Valda Aviks (Grandma), Sean Kingsley (Mal Beineke), Kara Lane (Alice Beineke), Ahmed Hamad (Lucas Beineke), Dickon Gough and Ryan Bennett (sharing the role of Lurch), Abigail Brodie, Sophie Hutchinson, Matthew Ives and Sean Lopeman. Also new to the cast and joining the ensemble is Castell Parker. Further casting to be announced.

 

Joanne Clifton has starred as Janet in the UK tour of The Rocky Horror Show, Alex Owens in the UK tour of Flashdance, and Dale Tremont in Top Hat, where she received her second Offie nomination. Her first was for her acting debut as the Streetwalker in Irving Berlin’s Face the Music. Joanne is perhaps best known for her time on BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing. After winning the World Professional Showdance Championship and the European Professional Ballroom Championship, she joined the show as a professional dancer. During her time on the show, she performed in the Strictly Come Dancing Live Tour, was an expert presenter on the programme’s backstage show, It Takes Two, won the Christmas Special with McFly’s Harry Judd, and went on to win the glitterball trophy as the 2016 champion with her partner Ore Oduba. 

 

Wednesday Addams, the ultimate princess of darkness, has grown up and has a shocking secret that only Gomez knows; she’s fallen in love with a sweet, smart young man from a respectable family! Now, Gomez Addams must do something he’s never done before — keep a secret from his beloved wife, Morticia.  Everything will change for the whole family on the fateful night they host a dinner for Wednesday’s “normal” boyfriend and his parents.  All the usual clan are present - Uncle Fester, Lurch, Pugsley et al.

 

THE ADDAMS FAMILY, A Musical Comedy, will be directed by Matthew White, with choreography by Alistair David, production design by Diego Pitarch, orchestrations by Richard Beadle, lighting design by Ben Cracknell, sound design by Richard Brooker and casting by Jane Deitch. Book is by Marshall Brickman and Rick Elice, and music and lyrics by Andrew Lippa, based on the characters created by Charles Addams.

 

THE ADDAMS FAMILY 2021 UK Tour is produced by Katy Lipson for Aria Entertainment and Music & Lyrics Limited, and is presented through special arrangement with Theatrical Rights Worldwide.

 

For further information, please visit www.theaddamsfamily.co.uk

Joanne Clifton to play Morticia in The Addams Family UK & Ireland Tour

Wednesday, 15 September 2021

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

In Conversation With... Natasha Langridge | In Memory of Leaves | Interview


Following on from Memoirs of a Tree, Natasha Langridge returns withIn Memory of Leaves. This monologue describes Natasha’s experience living in a block of flats on the Portobello Road council estate, which is being torn down by developers, and how all of her surroundings and green spaces are rapidly changing. The monologue also explores her work in Calais with the Occupy movement and the sadness people feel when they have to say goodbye to "home".



Did you grow up writing or was there something or someone which inspired you to write?

I’ve always written but I never showed anyone until after I’d started acting. I loved interpreting other writers work but I found that I had something to say too so I took my courage and showed my own work to other writer friends who, luckily, encouraged me to get it out there.



As well as writing, you perform and direct. How do you juggle each string to your bow and how do you smoothly transition from one to another?

I’ve got a very nice hat for each job and I look forward to wearing each one. I’m not sure I do anything smoothly except drinking wine.



Have you got any other quirky, hidden passions you’d like to pursue?

I went on a sailing trip recently. On an old Thames Sailing Barge .The main mast was 70ft high. I watched the mate climb the rigging. I helped unfurl the sail. I learnt how to tie a bowline knot. I helped steer the ship. I watched the moon rise up over the sea. I quite fancy being a pirate.



What’s your writing setup like? Do you have a certain playlist or drink you always have with you?

My vape. I move around to different places in my flat with my laptop. Or I sit on the floor with huge amounts of scrunched up paper strewn around me. Writing is terrifying. Like walking a tightrope.



In Memory of Leaves is extremely personal, did you feel a sense of pressure putting such an important story out into the world?

I felt a sense of compulsion. I’d just seen a beautiful park beneath my window massacred and felt I had to write about it and then shout about it. I am bearing witness to the ‘regeneration’ of my estate and of London and I have to tell its story-or my part in that story.



What’s the number one message you want people to take away from the show?

Live. From your heart. Speak out against injustice. We are living in a world run by psychopaths. We are living in a society based on a psychopathic model. Do whatever you can to protect love, all life and community. 



Finally, what’s your number one piece of advice for anyone hoping to get into the performing industry, be it writing, performing, directing or anything else?


Do it. Don’t wait for anyone else. Or for the phone to ring. Get some good training and make your own work. 


Thank you Natasha for taking the time to do this interview. In Memory of Leaves is being performed on a wide beam barge across three London locations. More information can be found at: https://goo.gl/QEXSrf

Interview by Olivia Mitchell, Editor

In Conversation With... Natasha Langridge | In Memory of Leaves | Interview

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

Thursday, 14 September 2017

In Conversation With... Joe McElderry | Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat | Interview

Joe McElderry rose to fame when he became the winner of X Factor back in 2009 and since then has had a wide and varied career. He is currently playing the lead role of Joseph in UK tour of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. We sat down to chat about Joseph, his career and tour life...



Have you always wanted to be a performer or did you have a different dream when you were younger?
I always wanted to be a paramedic actually when I was younger, or a nurse. I was always kind of really interested and fascinated in medicine and medical stuff and hospitals so yeah I wanted to be a paramedic before a singer.


Have you got any hidden passions that you'd like to pursue?
I dunno you know? ....I mean, I love sports and I love exercising and stuff so maybe something around that? What that is I don't know but I'm passionate about work outs and exercise kind of things.


You went from being a solo performer to TV and now to musical theatre. How were those transitions for you? Did you find them easy?
I think the transition from performing like my own material to then musical theatre was kind of a big transition. A lot of the other ones have obviously stemmed from TV shows so they've been kind of different transitions if that makes sense?


Your album Saturday Night at the Movies recently came out. How was the recording process for that and how have your fans reacted?
It was great! I mean it was quite a quick process recording the album. We're doing 10 shows of Joseph a week so recording and finding the time to fit that in was pretty intense but the reaction was great! It went to the top 10 and we went on the tour and it was amazing to kind of take the album on the road and be able to see first hand the reactions. You see the reaction as people are watching the show so its brilliant.


As you say, you recently toured with the album and are now touring with Joseph, so how do you find the tour life?
I love it! It can be very intense and very tiring at times but its kind of my favourite thing to be able to perform in front of an audience and like I was saying with the album, have that first hand response. I prefer being on tour more that I do recording and being in the studio and I just kind of enjoy the routine of it as well.


What drew you to the role of Joseph in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamboat?
Well I was asked to do it about three or four times and I said no originally... well I didn't actually say no but I didn't really have the time and it just didn't fit into the schedule of what I was doing at each moment. But I was also quite apprehensive about taking on such a big role. I didn't want to be bad at it, I wanted to be good so when I was asked for the final time they said "we'll fit it around you, lets make it work", I was really nervous cause I wanted to do a good job of it.


What do you think people will be saying as they leave the show?
I hope they leave first of all feeling great and energised and happy and I hope we explain the story well through the emotion of it all.


How do you keep your voice healthy enough to do 10 shows a week?
I don't drink a lot of alcohol, that's certainly one. I get lots of sleep. I do lots of exercise and it's just about respecting your body and no going out after the shows and shouting in clubs and things like that. You've got to be quite sensible and you've got to pace yourself over 10 shows -it's a lot!


Have you got any other dream roles?
At the minute I'm just kind of like "whatever will be, will be". I've experienced many things in my career, some things that I've never expected and some things that have given so much that I never expected. So I'm kind of of the opinion that we'll see what's round the corner and if it's something that I can have fun with and learn from and grow from then I'll be a part of it.


What's a fun fact people might not know about you?
A fun fact people might not know about me?? I don't know! I think people know a lot of things about me... one of the joys of living in the public eye!! I really don't know... I'm a bit of a wind up! I like to wind people up- a bit of a practical joker!


What is your best piece of advice for an aspiring performer?
Work hard and be respectful to people you work with and be prepared. There's many ups and downs and know that failure is probably one of the most beneficial things you could ever learn from!

Interview by Olivia Mitchell, Editor

In Conversation With... Joe McElderry | Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat | Interview

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Hairspray (UK Tour), Bord Gais Energy Theatre | Review


Hairspray (Tour)
Bord Gais Energy Theatre, Dublin
Reviewed on Monday 11th September 2017 by Damien Murray 
★★

Despite highlighting serious issues such as prejudice and intolerance, this show remains a popular, light-hearted and fun night of musical theatre and this latest touring production – courtesy of Mark Goucher, Matthew Gale and Laurence Myers – certainly kept it in this now famous ‘feel-good’ vibe.

Set in Baltimore in 1962, against a backdrop of racial segregation, the simple scenario of wanting teenagers of all colours to be able to dance together on a local TV dance programme with a campaign for integration on the show reflects the wider problem of racial segregation and to a welcomed social change at that time.

Opening with a look down at teenage Tracy in bed before hitting hard with one of the show’s most popular songs, 'Good Morning Baltimore', this production got off to a bright up-tempo start in a busy street scene with the dancers quickly establishing the two main communities of the piece, and – under Paul Kerryson’s direction – this theme was reinforced throughout (e.g. there was the telling line that “the TV is black and white” and the costumes in the jail scene were all black and white for the protesters as opposed to the colourful costumes that were used in the rest of the show).




Staged with a practical and realistic brick house set at either side, this production used mobile trucks and effective projected scenery throughout to keep its fast-moving pace in place, while Philip Gladwell’s bright and colourful lighting plot brought a lot to the show and I loved, at the start of each Act, how the audience was flooded in moving coloured lights to create a fun atmosphere.

As a dance-orientated show, Drew McOnie’s choreography and movement was always slick, lively, entertaining and of its time and it was a brave decision to do a routine at one stage with several basketballs being thrown about on a crowded stage.

While the costumes were overly bright (probably for staging purposes to increase the fun and escapism elements of the production), they – like the hairstyles – were authentic for the era.

The mostly up-tempo score was varied with 60s Pop, Rhythm & Blues, Doo-Wop and Gospel influences, and Musical Director, Ben Atkinson, and his 7-piece on-stage band did well in keeping things moving at a lively pace and with such a full-on sound, despite this show being written for a much larger instrumentation line-up.




While the comic duet, 'You’re Timeless To Me', proved popular with audiences, songs like 'Mama, I’m A Big Girl Now' and 'I Can Hear The Bells' were well staged; the latter having a particular magical feel to it.

However, the big production numbers that really stood out were: 'Welcome To The 60s', complete with the female vocal trio’s sparkling dresses and the floor gobos and wallpaper displaying a popular pattern of the era; the glorious piece of Gospel, 'I Know Where I’ve Been', which almost lifted the roof; and the all-singing, all-dancing finale, 'You Can’t Stop The Beat', with its totally infectious feel-good factor.

Sometimes there is something about the way a particular show is written, or cast, that is simply annoying and, for me, it is why there is a tradition of playing Tracy’s mother, Edna, as a ‘drag-role (i.e. always played by a man), as the character is not a drag queen, but was first played by one).
I feel it adds nothing to the show and is unnecessary … maybe it is just me and I am missing something obvious, but I just don’t get it.

However, that said, this is certainly no reflection on the talents of Matt Rixon, who played the role of the large, kind and shy Edna superbly in what could best be described as a towering performance, especially against the physically smaller, Norman Pace, as her ever-joking but loving husband, Wilbur (maybe that is the reason for the ‘drag-role’?).




Brenda Edwards’ super soulful vocals made her perfect for the part of the sassy and determined Motormouth Maybelle, while the experienced performance by Gina Murray, as the producer and controlling mother, Velma, was a show-stealer here and this scheming villainess must surely be the most glamorous ‘baddie’ of them all.

If Velma was the baddie, then young Rebecca Mendoza was a real ‘goodie’ here, making an impressive professional debut as the big-hearted and teenage Tracy.

All were well supported by the lively ensemble and others like Jon Tsouras’ self-loving Corney, Layton Williams’ energetic and popular, Seaweed, Edward Chitticks’ heart-throb pop star, Link, Aimee Moore’s not so talented and selfish wannabe, Amber, and Annalise Liard-Bailey – another recent theatre graduate – as the dim but beautiful, Penny.

Hairspray is at the Bord Gais Energy Theatre until September 16th before continuing on its tour.

Photo Credit: Darren Bell

Hairspray (UK Tour), Bord Gais Energy Theatre | Review

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

In Conversation With... Louis Dempsey | The Weir | Interview

Louis Dempsey has an extensive list of credits to his name including film, television and theatre. He will soon be starring in the English Touring Theatre's production of Conor McPherson's, The Weir which opens on September 8th at the Mercury Theatre, Colchester



For anyone that doesn’t know, can you explain a little about your career and highlights so far?

I trained with Cygnet Training Theatre in Exeter. I've appeared in numerous stage productions including the original West End production of Stones in his Pockets, Romans in Britain at The Crucible, Sheffield, Taming of the Shrew at The Globe, Juno and the Paycock at Bristol Old Vic, Some Voices at The Young Vic, Brothers of the Brush at Liverpool Everyman. I've also appeared in another Conor McPherson play, The Seafarer, at The Lyric Theatre, Belfast.

On screen I've appeared in films such as Troy, Cloud Atlas, Shooters, Revolver, Grabbers, Six Bullets, Omagh, The Last Drop. I've also popped up on tv screens in Holby City, Waterloo Road, Sea of Souls and, of course, The Bill.

Highlight of my career so far? Hmm. Probably Troy because it was an amazing experience to be part of a huge Hollywood blockbuster movie with all that entails.



Have you always aspired to be a performer or did you have a different career path in mind when you were younger?

I never had any ambitions to become an actor. Where I grew up in Dublin your ambitions rarely went further than getting a job and a drink! I loved films as a child but I always assumed that actors came from Planet Actor. The idea that I might one day be up there on screen myself seemed utterly ridiculous.



What drew you to the role of Finbar in The Weir?

I don't know if one could say I was drawn to the role. My agent called, asked if I was interested in taking a meeting for a touring production of The Weir. I knew something of the play and having done The Seafarer (also by Conor McPherson) I was curious. When I read Finbar I kind of got where he was coming from but only in a very rough way.

When people come to see this production of The Weir they can expect to hear the best story they will hear all year! No doubt at all.



Can you sum up the show in five words?

Hmm. Funny. Poignant. Scary. Moving. Uplifting.



How is the 20th anniversary production of The Weir bringing something new to the modern classic?

Well I have never seen a production of The Weir so I cannot compare but I will say that The Weir is such a complete story, with so many layers and revelations about life, love, sadness, joy, heartbreak and happiness that I don't think it is even accurate to describe it as a modern classic. The Weir is simply a classic, regardless of when it was written or set.



What’s a fun fact people may not know about you?

Prince Charles once asked me to have a drink with him. I did. It was fun.



If you could go back to any era, when would you go to and why?

Well, I'm not a big fan of the past. I suspect that if I did travel back in time to a bygone era, people there would say "What the hell are you doing here??!! There's no email and toilets haven't been invented. Are you crazy???”


What’s your best piece of advice for an aspiring performer?



You have two eyes, two ears and a mouth. Use them in that order. 

Thank you so much Louis for taking the time to do this interview. The Weir starts touring on September 8th and continues through to November 25th

Interview by Olivia Mitchell, Editor

In Conversation With... Louis Dempsey | The Weir | Interview

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Jane Eyre (Tour), Grand Opera House | Review


Jane Eyre (Tour)
Grand Opera House, Belfast 
Reviewed by Damien Murray on Tuesday 22 August 2017 
★★

The National Theatre and Bristol Old Vic’s joint production of Jane Eyre is astonishingly good … and it is far from being what one would expect! 

It may be based on Charlotte Brontë’s classic novel, but this work – devised by the original company – is modern in its approach, in its styling and in its staging and manages to retain Jane Eyre’s core characterisation of being a free spirit and a strong-willed individual who strives for equality and for the right to be herself. 

I am not a Brontë fan, yet I was blown away by this riveting production and gladly sat through over three hours of it without any loss of interest. Everything about this visually-stunning production is praise worthy, from its innovative direction and inventive staging to its exceptional and intense ensemble playing (complete with strong elements of physical theatre), and from its faultless lighting and sound plots to its magnificent movement, which ranged from the delicate and the balletic to the furious and the frenzied throughout. 

The trio of on-stage actor/musicians brought a lot to the table, with music that varied from appropriately ‘English’ style folk to gospel to what could best be described as atmospheric soundscapes, when required.  Musically, I loved Melanie Marshall’s apt interpretation and arrangement of the Gnarls Barkley (CeeLo Green) hit, 'Crazy' – so unexpected, yet totally fitting. 

Although performances were all faultless, I must congratulate Paul Mundell in particular for bringing the dog, Pilot, to life so well and with so much humour. 

Years ago, the Belfast Festival at Queen’s used to bring some spectacular pieces of world theatre to Belfast and these were ‘special’… This production is of such a high calibre that it seems a shame that it is just another touring production, for it, too, is very ‘special’ and provides a fantastic night of theatre – Don’t miss it! 

Jane Eyre continues at Belfast’s Grand Opera House until Sat 26 Aug, 2017

Jane Eyre (Tour), Grand Opera House | Review

Thursday, 24 August 2017

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Grease (UK Tour), New Victoria Theatre | Review


Grease (UK Tour)
New Victoria Theatre
Reviewed on Monday July 10th 2017 by Valerie Field
★★

Grease first appeared on Broadway in 1972 but became really popular in 1978 when it was made into a film with John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John and became a cult classic. Set in the 1950’s as a High School Musical when Rock and Roll was extremely popular with the younger generation and the great Elvis Presley was on the scene, it was a cool time to be around and the musical is just as popular now as people are always eager to experience the nostalgia of their youth either because they grew up in the 50s or grew up with the film. This new tour revival of the show has all the classic songs and is a fun night out for any Grease lover.


The well known story revolves mostly around Bad Boy Danny Zuko and the innocent new girl Sandy after the two had a summer fling before unknowingly ending up at the same school. Tom Parker who played Danny in my opinion didn’t have enough presence on stage although as the show went on he seemed to come across a bit more confident especially in the dance routines. His voice was strong at points but he didn't quite reach the level of charm, charisma and roughness needed to really be Danny Zuko.


Michael Cortez as Sonny and Tom Senior as Kenickie both had much more presence on stage and I feel would have been better suited to the part of Danny. Both actors were funny, charismatic and over the top enough to steal the scenes they were in.

Danielle Hope was very good as Sandy and her singing voice had shades of Olivia Newton-John, she was wonderful as both the sweet, innocent Sandy and the sexy Sandy who comes in act two. George Olney was fantastic as Teen Angel/Vince Fontaine and had the audience really involved and with him throughout his scenes. 

The costumes by Andreane Neofitou and choreography by Arlene Phillips really brought 50’s to life and the special effects were brilliant, especially when Greased Lightning came to life on stage. It was nice to see the orchestra on stage as they were great and really got the audience in the feel good mood.

All in all it's a very energetic and enjoyable show for any lovers or likers of the original.

Grease is at the New Victoria theatre until July 15th before continuing it's UK tour.

Grease (UK Tour), New Victoria Theatre | Review

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Shirley Valentine (UK Tour), New Victoria Theatre | Review


Shirley Valentine
New Victoria Theatre
Reviewed on Monday 13th March 2017 by Glenys Balchin
★★

I am old enough to have seen the Oscar nominated Shirley Valentine film nearly thirty years ago but never the play. Therefore I was not sure whether or not I would enjoy the one woman show without the famous Costas played by Tom Conti in the film. But I was not disappointed. Jodie Prenger shone as brightly as Pauline Collins had thirty years ago as Shirley Valentine.  


For the duration of two hours Jodie Prenger marched and swaggered to dominate the stage and all the time cleverly engaging and drawing in her the audience.  You totally forgot she was on her own as she brought the other characters to life on stage. I would certainly recommend this show to my friends but with the caveat that they are women of a certain age.


The play itself is about a bored and disillusioned Liverpudlian housewife who is trying to find her identity and get back her “unused life”. Her adventures starts when her best friend invites her to go to Greece on holiday with her. She takes up the offer of a trip as she feels dissatisfied, neglected and ignored by her husband and family, now that her children have flown the nest. She goes to Greece for a two week holiday but decides to stay and as she feels no one would miss her at home.  


Don’t be mistaken into thinking this is a Greek tragedy, it is a heartfelt emotional comedy with Jodie Prenger performing with impeccable comedic timing to make you laugh and cry at the same time. Willy Russell is amazing in understanding the psyche and intellect of women. This comedy may have been written three decades ago, 1986 to be exact, but is still just as relevant today, which in a way is a sad thing for me to have say, as you would have thought that we would have moved on. On saying that the age of the leading lady probably would now be older and there certainly are more opportunities for women these days to follow, as long as they have the right encouragement at home.


As for depicting the era I thought the kitchen set was a throwback of my Mum’s kitchen in the eighties when I was growing up so, for me it was a real nostalgic trip down memory lane. I thought it was a good decision to keep to the original decade of when the play was written rather than updating to the current day. The special effect when Jodie Prenger cooks eggs and chips during the play added an authentic touch plus Jodie really knew how to work the kitchen so fully believable. 


My only criticism on not depicting the 80’s accurately would be Jodie’s hair which was more the fifties style rather than over permed shaggy haircut or that of the late Lady Diana’s hair style. The music could have been more eighties and when she was in Greece a little bit more Zorba but that may have distracted from the performance.


There is no doubt that Prenger owns the stage and mesmerises her audience with her larger than life personality which carries this revival of Shirley Valentine from the opening to the curtain call. To give an amazing performance like Jodie delivered must be attributed to the way she has been directed by the legendary Glen Walford, who has skilfully nurtured Jodie’s talent to enable her to deliver a fast-paced performance which does not falter nor lose energy from the fast paced monologue.


My first thought of seeing Shirley Valentine is that it would feel out-dated, not funny and never equal the performance of Pauline Collins, so I was very happy to say that I have been proven totally wrong.  The Willy Russell script has clearly stood the test of time, and Jodie Prenger was absolutely sensational in the part.  It was a great night at the theatre it made me laugh but at the same time I came home thinking about my own “Unused Life”. 


If you are a woman of a certain age then this show is a must for you, it will make you laugh, give you great pleasure and happiness a real nostalgic trip back to the eighties. 


Shirley Valentine runs at the New Victoria theatre until March 18th 2017 before continuing on its UK Tour

Shirley Valentine (UK Tour), New Victoria Theatre | Review

Tuesday, 14 March 2017