There is no doubt that Singin' in the Rain is one of the most memorable movie musical classics and it's no wonder that it is rarely seen on the amateur circuit, because - blimey - it's a monumental challenge!
However, whatever challenges LWMS may have faced in staging this classic, they were long gone as the utterly fantastic cast took to the stage tonight. In an explosion of cinematic Technicolor before the audience's eyes, the familiar music, dancing and iconic scenes were brilliantly brought to life by this multi-talented cast.
It was a thoroughly polished production and a treat for the eyes and ears. Considering many of the audience would have Gene Kelly, Donald O’Connor and Debbie Reynolds etched in their minds, it didn’t phase the three leads in this production. Taking on the role of Don Lockwood was a suitably charismatic Kenny Robinson – with a lovely, rich tone to his voice, he was a natural in the role. Equally impressive was Hannah Hampson as Kathy Selden; she captured the innocence of Selden with a beautiful vocal to match. Whilst Matt Goodwin’s Cosmo Brown was a delight, quirky and hilarious, he captured the frivolous character perfectly. Not one funny opportunity was missed.
Superb support came from Colin Ritchie as R.F. Simpson, but it was the comedy delivered from Nikki Claire Cross’s Lina Lamont that really had the audience whooping with laughter. Her characterisation was sublime and she really did shine.
The musical is cleverly interspersed with movie footage, all impressively recreated by the team. There was no let up in pace and the scenes transitioned smoothly, making for a truly professional feel to the performance. But, the crowning glory in this show (aside from the fantastic orchestra under the direction of Alastair Evans) was the exhilarating choreography. Nikki Shurvinton did not miss a trick in this carefully executed dance extravaganza. Staying true to the original, one of the shining moments came in Good Morning and the finale of Singin In The Rain, as the entire ensemble took to the stage in an epic tap routine.
Having never seen a production from LWMS before, the talent was staggering. From the talented ensemble, to the super principles, Stephen Duckham has directed a show that everyone should be thoroughly delighted with. A huge well done to everyone involved.
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