Director & Choreographer – Cynthia Stead
Musical Directors – Geoff Osborne & Simon Lovell
This production started with an excellent opening scene encapsulating Charity’s ongoing search for and failure to find someone to love her. Her disappearance into the lake and the reactions of the interested but unconcerned crowd were extremely well handled. A great performance from Charity, strongly in focus throughout the show and her changes of mood, always with hope for the future in front of her, were very well portrayed. Good performances too from Helen and Nickie. Herman could have been a bit more pushy and sharp early on, but came into his own in the goodbye Charity scheme. Though Vittorio came across reasonably well I felt his accent was really too far over the top. Daddy Brubeck was a good Rhythm leader and in fact the whole of the number generated plenty of comedy, though I did wonder about the very loud announcement before its beginning, followed by what sounded to be a very quiet start. The reverse might have been better. Oscar was a treat to watch and his scenes with Charity were excellent. Choreography was attuned to the cast and came across well, one highlight being the ability of the men to keep precisely in step in Brass Band! Scenery was simple and effective. It did occur to me that, given the space available, the Fan Dango inspection rail was overcrowded and as a result limited the posturing of the girls. I also found the positioning of the wardrobe in Vittorio’s apartment initially confusing. Costume and lighting all did justice to a production, which though a little slow at times in Act 1, as a whole came over very well indeed.
Review by John Warburton