Posted 07 November 2012 - 01:06 PM
I went yesterday and had a brilliant time watching a film I swooned over as a young teen (actually I don’t think I was an actual teen yet when it came out) on stage, with fab performers singing Whitney songs I love.
The cast is great, I love Heather Headley, so having her in the West End is amazing, Debbie Kurup was great as well and the guy playing the stalker is one hell of a sexy psychopath. :-) It took me some time to warm to Farmer, but I did like him by the end, plus the fact he is very easy on the eye helped a lot. (Yes, I am that shallow!)
The Fletcher we had was great, I am not big on kids on stage but he didn’t annoy me, which means he must have been decent.
The rest of the cast was good as well, but other than enjoying watching Holly James dance, I have to say I was very pre-occupied watching Heather (she is one of those people that could sing the phone book to me and I’d be happy, love the tone of her voice) and Debbie, those two definitely stood out for me.
It is quite a technical show (as the director was reminding us several times before the show started :-) ), the sets are beautiful to look at and I want that huge “Gingerbread” house they have in the second act, it’s amazing!!! :-)
It was a first preview, so I guess the scene and set transitions that were still pretty clunky yesterday, will all get tightened and smoothed out in the next few weeks. I don’t think the book flowed that well either, but again, hopefully that will get tightened up. The one thing that really needs work IMO is the whole end of the Oscars sequence, it just felt rushed and didn’t really work, being pretty anti-climatic in my opinion.
They made some changes to the story line, Nicki’s part has been extended and the two baddies got combined into one, but essentially the story hasn't changed.
So my overall verdict, I had a brilliant time, walked out of the theatre smiling and humming the songs and will definitely be back. But then I have a soft spot for the film and love Whitney Houston.
Would I not know the film or be a huge Whitney fan and just judge it as a stand-alone piece of musical theatre, it’s probably not that great. But I guess that is the case with most jukebox musicals/film to stage adaptations.