That is great! Thanks very much mallardo.
Posted 14 November 2012 - 09:53 AM
That is great! Thanks very much mallardo.
Posted 14 November 2012 - 12:22 PM
Firstly I have to say OH WOW to the caliber of audience member. I was sat in the Upper Circle so perhaps I shouldn't have been surprised by comments such as "ooh, do you fink they are gonna like show the film" or BEFORE THE SHOW STARTED "how am I supposed to see with that curtain in the way". Oh dear.
The show itself was a bit of a shocker... It missed out essential plot lines such as the fact that Nikki hires a hitman to kill Rachel? ALSO I do not know why they felt the need to use so many blooming projections on gauzes! It was such a cop out! Big chase scenes were projected on stage, rather than acted out. What is the point of making a film into a stage show if you are going to project film instead of action!
The song list was a bit strange too...'I Wanna Dance With Somebody' for the reprise seemed just more like an ode to Whitney rather than having any benefit to the musical what so ever.
If anyone does see the show, I recommend that you avoid the Upper Circle (although the view was fine, the constant stream of chatter and stupid comments whilst the show was taking place were not)
I anyone involved in the production of the show sees this message: PLEASE lord rethink the overuse of projections. It's just not necessary.
Posted 14 November 2012 - 02:08 PM
Posted 14 November 2012 - 02:52 PM
I only booked as I would take any opportunity to see Heather Headley live. She is a real star and sings way better than Whitney ever did. She's also a great actress with a great stage presence. Even sitting in a chair while her sister was singing I found myself watching her rather than the bland and boring Debbie Kurup (who doesn't fair well when having to sing with Heather as her voice is nowhere near powerful enough).
I thought the staging was really good and pretty clever. I liked the use of projections and the platforms that raise up and down, etc. The lighting is also pretty spectacular I thought. Most of the songs didn't really fit into the story, but I expected that. This is after all just another jukebox musical (which is all London seems to want at the moment unfortunately!).
I will go back when it officially opens and see if they've changed/improved much during the previews. And to once again witness Heather's extraordinary performance.
Posted 15 November 2012 - 12:12 PM
Posted 17 November 2012 - 11:29 PM
The performance went smoothly and considering it's only the second weekend of previews it could have easily been in the second year of its run...
People are probably going to say that it's a cop out by making most of the songs part of Rachel's performance, but the story is about a worldwide singing superstar so... it makes sense!
Cast are brilliant. Debbie Kurup and Lloyd Owen are very strong and the little boy playing Fletcher was charming with a great voice. As I mentioned, Gloria is amazing and has a brilliant stage presence.
I personally loved the set. It moved smoothly and all worked really well - a lot of drapes, projections, rising platforms etc. ... special mention to the alpine lodge set piece in Act 2, I don't know where they had that hiding but it's really impressive!
I have never seen the film but everything made perfect sense and I understood what was going on throughout. The narrative flows, maybe a few tweaks here and there but I believe by the opening night it'll be polished and perfect. The mentions of Facebook/Twitter brings everything up to date...
The songs all work fine, all mainly sung by the Maron sisters and one by The Stalker. Fletcher chips in on a song here and there but it all fits. It's not an 80's jukebox musical; they've definitely modernised the orchestrations (i.e. by rapping during 'So Emotional' - trust me, it's not as bad as it sounds!)
The lighting is great, there are some really lovely effects used and a few slow motion sequences which really stand out.
Singing is faultless, a good mix of slower emotional ballads and really powerful dance tracks where the Adelphi roof is nearly blown off by the noise (in a good way!) Some points where the orchestra (who are great) drown out the singing but I guess they will get this fixed before opening night...
'I Wanna Dance with Somebody' is the encore number and although it has no attachment to the storyline whatsoever it was brilliantly executed and despite the storyline not being related to Whitney in any way, I feel after her passing some sort of ode and dedication to her would go down well with any audience. That being said, the show could easily finish on the same high with 'I Will Always Love You', which was probably one of the most stunning things I've seen on a stage in recent years... it was simple but that's what made it, the audience erupted before Gloria even got to finish...
I feel my review doesn't really do the production justice, but taking everything into consideration I was really impressed. It will be a classic hen party night out (there was a drunk woman in front of me singing along to most songs... sadly she wasn't quite Whitney reincarnated!) but I think it will appeal to everyone. The critics will probably find something to slate, but I think (and hope!) this will do well on word of mouth. I'm definitely going back once it's opened officially and will hopefully get to see Heather next time, although second helpings of Gloria's talent wouldn't go amiss...
Posted 17 November 2012 - 11:34 PM
Posted 18 November 2012 - 07:03 AM
Posted 18 November 2012 - 10:01 AM
I didn't like the rap in So Emotional. For me it didn't fit with the rest of the song and interrupted what was a great rendition of a classic. I don't mind rap in some songs but for me adding rap to So Emotional didn't work and was one of my only criticisms with the evening - the projections another.
Posted 18 November 2012 - 09:45 PM
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