Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Review: Witches provide one helluva party

The Witches Of Eastwick

The Witches Of Eastwick

Watermill Theatre

Monday, July 29


THE moral of this musical is surely ‘Be careful what you wish for’. But who needs morals? The audience at the Watermill was on such a high after this riotous, raunchy, rumbuctious show we had to be scraped off the ceiling. Morals can go hang.

Three lonely women — all embroiled in sleazy relationships with married men — lounge about drinking martinis and bemoaning the lack of a decent single guy in their New England hick town. They long for a new boy in town, and sing to the full moon to “make him handsome as a devil, and quite divine.”

Moments later Darryl Van Horne bursts on the scene in tight black jeans and a medallion, wiggling his hips like Elvis and declaring that he’s “just your average horny little devil.” It’s not long before all three friends are under his spell (and between his sheets) much to the shock and delight of the gossips.

There is a narrative thread to this show which involves Van Horne buying the crumbling ancestral home that by rights should belong to town stalwart, Felicia. There is tragedy, comedy, redemption and all those elements that make a good show tick along at a tempo. But what makes this production really shine is the West End-quality of the singing and dancing, under the direction of Strictly Come Dancing judge Craig Revel Horwood.

The three witches not only have fabulous voices, they shimmy and shake and glide about the stage with fluid tarantism, like women truly possessed.

The rest of the cast have a true dose of the triple curse, a talented band of musicians, dancers and actors, making the show fairly bounce along.

But it’s Mr Horne himself, Alex Bourne, that sets the stage on fire with his cheeky goatie, satanic grin and gravelly baritone voice. Jack Nicholson eat your heart out.

lContinues to September 14. Box office 01635 46044 or www.watermill.org.uk

Lesley Potter

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