Thursday, 18 August 2022

Music worth making a song and dance about

FROM soaring operatic ballads to frenetic tap-dancing and high-kicking extravaganzas, this show was a cascade of

FROM soaring operatic ballads to frenetic tap-dancing and high-kicking extravaganzas, this show was a cascade of musical classics.

From the fabulous Puttin’ on the Ritz to the likes of Good Morning, The Trolley Song, We’re in the Money and I Got Rhythm, mixed up with slow burners and haunting melodies, the richness and variety alongside sparkling sequins, jazzy suits and sparky choreography brought the stage to life.

With shimmying dance moves and excellent ensembles, alongside sonorous solo artists, they all made it look so easy and seamless, yet it was undoubtedly the result of extensive rehearsing.

The packed audience soaked it all up with delight. We were taken into the worlds of Irving Berlin, Rodgers and Hammerstein, George and Ira Gershwin, Lerner and Loewe and many others from Hollywood and Broadway’s “golden era.”

My companion was delighted as she is a big fan of Meet Me in St Louis.

The talented Simon Schofield introduced special guest star, G4’s Jonathan Ansell, who serenaded us at various points in the show, with an homage to Andrea Bocelli and hits such as ’O Sole Mio (or the Cornetto song), Nessun Dorma and an absolutely heart-melting rendition of Barcelona.

He clearly relished both the lyrics and the tunes, really wrapping his vocal cords around every word and melody. There were many moments of bittersweet nostalgia, with the poignant and topical You’ll Never Walk Alone, and I was moved by the audience gently joining in for the refrain of We’ll Meet Again.

The show covered a great swathe of the 20th century, with pearly kings and queens bringing us a “Cockney knees-up” and tunes of the Forties and Fifties right through to a celebration of the Rat Pack.

So we had It’s a Long Way to Tipperary as well as Luck Be a Lady, The Candyman and That’s Life. Bringing us the show tunes from the greats, That’s Entertainment had something for everyone — as witnessed by lots of clapping and singing along from the audience, including me!

Review: Natalie Aldred

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