If you fancy a night of feel-good retro pop songs, dancing, gelled hair and beehives then this is definitely a show for you.
A celebration of some of the greatest hit songs of the rock n’ roll era and inspired by the smash hit, multi-million selling albums, jukebox musical Dreamboats and Petticoats is set in the early 1960s and centres around young musicians from St. Mungo’s Youth Club, Essex, who compete to win a national song writing competition. Including popular hits Let’s Dance, To Know Him is to Love Him, Shakin’ All Over, Run Around Sue and Let’s Twist Again, Norman (Alastair Hill) and Bobby (Alastair Higgins) are both determined to win the song-writing competition, but more importantly compete to win the attention of the beautiful Sue (Laura Darton). But shy and retiring Laura (Elizabeth Carter) falls head over heels for Bobby. Bobby fails to notice both the love-look and song-writing talents of Laura and it is not until she joins forces with popular lady’s man Norman, that both her musical talent and feelings of admiration come to Bobby’s attention.
The show flows from hit to hit with energy and dynamism, as one would expect from a Bill Kenwright production, with Alastair Hill (Norman) commanding the stage with some very alluring hip movements complimenting his masterful singing voice, playing opposite the equally talented Alastair Higgins (Bobby). With an endless set-list of quality classics, the music perhaps upstages the storyline, but nevertheless the audience were of the generation to remember the era as if it were yesterday, and this was apparent during the very happy audience sing-alongs.
With stunning vocal performances from both Laura Darton and Elizabeth Carter, the show features some visual delights, bright lights and big band vibes. A real treat to witness the instruments played live on stage alongside power vocals from the whole cast. The style of dance choreography was faultless (Carole Todd) and the live on-stage musicians a highpoint. With excellent performances by David Luke as Ray, Gracie Johnson as Donna and Jimmy Johnston as Phil and the older Bobby you just can’t help being entertained.
Great set, super costumes and strong direction by Bob Tomson, this musical is non-stop fun and well worth a visit.
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