I’ve been rather neglecting my reviews of late (which explains why several backdated posts have just gone up at the same time), but I suppose I just needed something a little bit special to prompt me into action. Not that the 39 Steps wasn’t brilliant, but musicals always inspire me just that little bit more. (The fact that the posts took even longer than that to be uploaded is because my internet connection is a bit temperamental at the moment).
Road Show at the Menier Chocolate Factory was a bit of a gamble really, mostly based on the fact I’m still kicking myself for missing A Little Night Music. Anyways, it sounded interesting and I recognised a few of the cast so I figured – why not? Turns out it was a rather good decision.
It’s a great show, with good music and a very strong cast. I also adored the staging and the choreography (the way they moved around the stage rather than the brief bursts of actual dancing). The ‘stage’ ran straight down the middle of the room, with the audience on each side. The cast moved fluidly across the space, with various pieces of the set including a bed on wheels that seemed to be involved in every other scene.
To give a brief outline for those who are unfamiliar with the plot, it tells the story of two brothers, Addison and Wilson Mizner, who try (and occasionally succeed) to make it rich in America in the early part of the 20th century. It follows Addison more than Wilson, but essentially it’s about their lives, based, I believe, on a true story. It was unexpectedly engaging and interesting and I was constantly wondering what was going to happen next. Favourite scene wise, I don’t want to give too much away, but unsurprisingly, I enjoyed the early part of the relationship between Addison and Hollis plus a couple of the bigger numbers, particularly ‘Addison’s Trip’ and ‘That Was A Year’. The constant throwing money around was also kinda fun!
As I mentioned earlier, the cast were superb, both talented and full of energy. Michael Jibson played Addison with David Bedella playing opposite him as his older brother Wilson. I was impressed by both of them and found them incredibly believable. I saw David Bedella play Frank N Furter and in a way the two characters had something in common, but there was certainly more to this one. As for Michael Jibson, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to hug him or hit him by the end of it, but I certainly wanted to do something, he brought the whole show to life. Mama and Papa Mizner were played by Gillian Bevan and Glyn Kerslake respectively, both of whom I enjoyed immensely. I saw Jon Robyns as Princeton/Rod in Avenue Q and I was a little worried I’d have trouble getting past that, but he was fabulous as Hollis Bessemer and I don’t think I once thought of muppets. Well maybe once, when he was talking about his big life’s ambition and I could just see Princeton going on about ‘purpose’, but that’s entirely beside the point. He was fantastic and as he was one of the reasons I saw the show, I’m pleased to say he did not disappoint.
The not-quite stage door afterwards was interesting and I have to say I’m glad I wasn’t the only one waiting (there was one other guy, at least). It was very fringe theatre (admittedly unsurprisingly) and I spent most of the time feeling silly stood around the cast’s friends and family. It was marginally less embarrassing than waiting at Waterloo East, but then I didn’t have Liam to look forward to seeing (I will on Tuesday next week however! Woot!). I’m glad I waited though as I managed to get all five of the main cast members. I decided against grabbing chorus members as I wasn’t sure who I’d recognise and didn’t want to embarrass myself further!
I’ve really got a bit carried away with shows over the next couple of weeks and I’m back in the fanfic zone, so I’m not sure how well I’m going to do with keeping up to date with reviews, but I’ll do my best. Other than that, it occurred to me recently that it’s now been five months since the America Trip and I’ve still not posted those blogs either… If I ever have time to sit down, I WILL get those up, honest! It’ll probably happen around the same time I finally get around to sorting through my 12,000 Take That photos… *sigh*
Anyways, a nice quietish weekend ahead and who knows, maybe Saturday night I’ll sit down and blog… Well that or I’ll catch up with three weeks of XtraFactor. Speaking of which, I watched this week’s XFactor during my lunch breaks today and yesterday and I have to agree with the general consensus, the Barlow really was on form, (barring one ‘yes’ for a flippin’ novelty act, that is). I also ended up crying, which I greatly resent. It’s a singing competition and I do not want to have my emotions drawn through the wrangler because someone’s grandmother has been supportive. It wasn’t even a proper sob-story! Anyway, I still hate it, but Gary makes it so very worth watching *dreamy sigh*. Have you seen that smile of his? *swoon*… *ahem*. It might be best if I save the next bit for another time before I drool all over my keyboard, but what I will say is; if you’ve not been watching Steel Burkhardt’s Q&A videos, do so now, he is looking lush (and I never say ‘lush’ unless I’m talking about the soap shop). And also I still love Josh Lamon :D.
So, er, yeah, that’s it for now. Back soon!
Peace, loVe loVe and happiness,