There’s no business like show business!
On one of my many trips to London over the last couple of months it has occurred to me just how lucky we are to have all these fabulous shows and performances available to us throughout all the theatres across the world. It is almost like having ‘musicals on tap’ and we here at Dancemania love our musicals. Can you believe that in one street in London there are eleven theatres presenting some of the best musicals there are – on one street! Also nowadays the musicals are out on tour visiting theatres in all areas of the world! No-one can deny it, even those who claim to hate them, an hour into watching one you will be taken on a roller coaster of emotions and you will enjoy it – believe me!
So which one is your favourite? Are you one for the traditional musicals like ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ or maybe you prefer the new funky musicals like ‘Spring Awakening’.
The last musical I went to see was the fabulous ‘Wicked’, within minutes of the curtain rising the hairs on my arms were standing on end with the stunning score and scenery. The cast were true masters of their trade with a faultless performance throughout. Based on the acclaimed novel by Gregory Maguire that re-imagined the stories and characters created by L. Frank Baum in ‘The Wonderful Wizard of Oz’, ‘Wicked’ tells the incredible untold story of an unlikely but profound friendship between two girls who first meet as sorcery students. Their extraordinary adventures in Oz will ultimately see them fulfil their destinies as Glinda The Good and the Wicked Witch of the West.
One really nice attribute was throughout the musical a selection of the well-loved characters from the classic ‘The Wizard of Oz’ pop up at various points which automatically draws you in even further. A great show for all ages, definately not to be missed!
One musical I am desperate to see is the fantastic ‘Legally Blonde the Musical’, starring Sheridan Smith as ‘Elle Woods’ and Denise Van Outen as ‘Paulette’. We have all seen the film and now the musical is out with even more energy and fun.
The musical score is brilliant and even though I am yet to see the show, it is a CD that is constantly played in my car so I can sing at the top of lungs! In the show college sweetheart and homecoming queen Elle Woods doesn’t take no for an answer. So when her boyfriend, Warner, dumps her for someone serious, Elle puts down the credit card, hits the books, and heads for Harvard Law School! Thinking she is there to get her man back Elle is on a mission but comes to find a new talent for law and maybe a new love?
The reviews for this show have gone through the roof:
‘Ridiculously enjoyable from start to finish. PERFECTION. A wonderful new musical. OMIGOD! I’m like totally going again’ -
Paul Taylor, The Independent
A FEEL-GOOD DELIGHT!. Sheridan Smith is Glorious. She brings vitality, warmth and great comic timing to the role. A HUGE HIT
Charles Spencer, The Daily Telegraph
“AN IRRESISTIBLY exuberant evening, expertly performed, A BOX OFFICE SMASH HIT.”
Claire Allfree, Metro
Something a little bit different….
If you are fans of the flamboyant ‘Rocky Horror Picture Show’ something tells me that you will love the colourful and most fabulous show ‘Priscilla Queen of the Desert’.
Based on the Australian film about Two drag-queens and a transsexual who are contracted to perform a drag show at a resort in Alice Springs, a resort town in the remote Australian desert. They head west from Sydney aboard their lavender bus, Priscilla. En Route they they meet a variety of characters, including a group of friendly Australian Aboriginies whom they perform for, but also encounter the less accepting attitudes of rural Australia in such towns as Coober Pedy, and are subjected to homophobic abuse and even violence, including having their tour bus vandalized.
When the tour bus breaks down in the middle of the desert, this results in the trio meeting Bob, a middle-aged mechanic from a small outback town who joins them on their journey. Before they arrive at Alice Springs, Tick reveals that Marion the woman who runs the resort where they will be performing, is actually his wife and that they are in fact going there as a favor to her. Upon arrival, it is revealed that Tick and Marion also have an 8-year-old son, Benjamin, whom Tick has not seen for many years.
So who is in the new London cast?
Well I almost fell down the escalator with excitement in the tube station when I saw on the poster that the latest person to join the cast as Bob is Ray Meagher, who is most famous for playing ‘Alf Stewart’ in the Australian soap ‘Home and Away’!! As you can tell I am a huge fan of ’Home and Away’ and it is brilliant to see Mr Meagher branching out and playing other roles.
Also from Britain’s favourite police drama ‘The Bill’, Ben Richards stars as Tick (Mitzi). Mr Richards has had a wealth experience with many theatre credits including leads in Guys And Dolls (Piccadilly), Grease (Victoria Palace and UK tour), Little Shop of Horrors (Octagon Theatre), The Full Monty (Prince of Wales), Saturday Night Fever (London Palladium) and many more.
Also he is mostly recognised for acting in such television programmes as; The Bill, Holby City, Footballers Wives and appeared as a judge on the second series of Strictly Dance Fever for BBC 1.
Some people may be put off seeing this show by it’s overly camp, extravagant and dazzling style but underneath all the glitz and glamour there is a story of true friendship, love and soul searching.
The story touches on some very controversial issues that challenges the audience but all the positive points (and there are plenty!) leave you feeling totally fabulous and wanting more! I feel that a musical such as this can only be a good thing, because it brings out the fun side of everyone but at the same time teaches you a lot. So ‘Priscillia Queen of the Desert’ I salute you, keep being the way you are because we here at Dancemania love you!
Halloween is not over…
If you want to carry on the Halloween celebrations then you have to go and see the creepy, bone chilling show ‘The Woman in Black’. It is an experience I am yet to let myself go through but I cant wait to be scared out my wits!
It is the story of a young junior solicitor who is ordered by his firms senior partner to travel up from London to attend the funeral and sort out the paper work of Mrs Alice Drablow, who died alone in Eel Marsh House which stands tall, gaunt and isolated. His task is a lonely one, and at first Kipps is quite unaware of the tragic secrets which lie behind the house’s shuttered windows. He only has a terrible sense of unease. And then, he glimpses a young woman with a wasted face, dressed all in black, at the back of the church during Mrs Drablow’s funeral, and later, in the graveyard to one side of Eel Marsh House. Who is she? Why is she there? He asks questions, but the locals not only cannot or will not give him answers – they refuse to talk about the woman in black, or even to acknowledge her existence, at all. So, Arthur Kipps has to wait until he sees her again, and she slowly reveals her identity to him – and her terrible purpose…..
Sounds ridiculously scarey? Yeah I know it does but it is also a great evening out which will have you perched nervously on the edge of your seat the whole way through!
I will go, if you go! Go on I dare you to….
Panto Season awaits!
Did you hear that? Was that a Christmas bell? Hang on a minute is it really that time of year again? Well it looks like it is and I cannot wait!
I truly love Christmas and welcome Santa with open arms to come to my town but I am still not convinced about Christmas Pantomimes. I was even in one last year, I played ‘Goldilocks’ on tour in Edinburgh but has the constant ‘he’s behind you’ left me a bit cold? Nah……its harmless fun isn’t it and if you can’t be silly and let your hair down at Christmas then when can you do it! So will you be visiting your local Pantomime this Xmas?
If Panto isnt your thing there are lots of other Christmas shows that will get you into the spirit such as the classic Charles Dickens ‘A Christmas Carol’ which is a must see at Christmas!
Get your Christmas pressies sorted early with our great selection of gifts for all you budding Dancers and Gymnasts out there!
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