Talent is not hard to find in the Midlands. However, the most astonishing thing to uncover is finding a show brimming with so much talent that there is not one single weak link. Last night, BITA's performance of In The Heights was simply astonishing. It left me speechless. The outstanding professionalism of the show was a testament to the whole company.
This Tony award-winning show is no mean feat to take on. With music and lyrics by the immensely talented Lin-Manuel Miranda, it's wonderful score is insanely complex.
Backdropped by a wonderful set designed by Andrew Exeter (who's lighting design complemented well), we were immediately transported to Washington Heights.
We quickly meet Usnavi who dreams of returning to the Dominican Republic. The protagonist of the piece, the role is played exceptionally well in the more than capable hands of Jack Christou. Leading the ensemble with prowess, he shines in all numbers, particularly the iconic ensemble pieces In The Heights and 96,000.
Erin Chalk's Nina and Martha Graham's Vanessa were vocally stunning, their delivery of Breathe and It Won't Be Long Now, respectively, were spine tinglingly good. With characterisation and vocals unfaltering from all, other stand out performances came from Dec Foster as Benny with Matt Perry as Kevin and Vicki Addis as Camilla, successfully portraying characters beyond their years as Nina's parents. However, the shining example of this came from the delightful Amy Evans as Abuela. Conveying the mature Latino with sheer conviction, she encapsulated the role beautifully.
Towering support came from Billy Vale as Sonny and Mollie-Mae Hallahan as Daniella, with a cheeky cameo from Dan Sharrock as Jose.
Under the accomplished talents of Chris Passey, Attiye Partridge, Ben MacSkimming and Lindon Barr, the space was filled with energy from beginning to end. With visually breathtaking choreography, the entire cast have delivered a superlative show. Bloody brilliant.
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