I'm not sure about all of you but I am pretty much fed up with the rain on the roof as it goes pit-pitty-pat and if I had a kitty cat I would tell it to sit. (If you get this reference well done).
Life is very full at the minute my dears, filled with the very real ups and downs of life and so taking time to escape for a coupe of hours is even more welcome which is why last evening we ventured to the Theatre Royal in Nottingham to see a performance of Save The Last Dance.
One of Mrs B's work colleagues commented that we seem to go to the theatre an awful lot - and perhaps we do. What is wrong with that I ask?
I have a pile of tickets next to me that will see us visit local theatres for six forthcoming events as well as The Royal Albert Hall in a few weeks for The Night of 1000 Voices.
I suppose I still hanker after the thrill of appearing on stage, I did so love it. Perhaps I will find my way back again but in the meantime we invest our well earned pennies in that pile of tickets that open up the magical world of theatre and an escape from reality for a little while.
Save The Last Dance is what they might call a jukebox musical in that it is peppered with songs that were very familiar, most from the pen of Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman. Now these were names that I could not say I had heard before but you will know the songs of that I am sure: Sweets For My Sweet, Teenager In Love, Suspicion, His Latest Flame and Viva Las Vegas to cite just a few.
The show was written by Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran and has been produced by Bill Kenwright and Laurie Mansfield.
Lord Sir Bill of Kenwright is a very wise man and he has put together a show that will leave the audience with a huge grin on their face and a song on their lips as they trip through the discarded toffee wrappers and empty ice cream tubs back out into the rain.
The story is a simple one and initially I thought too simple but in the end you realise that the simplicity of girl meets boy works really well. A white girl from Luton meets a black USAF airmen whilst on holiday in Lowestoft, what follows is a sweet love story which deftly looks at the racism of an era. The events are set in the 1960's thereby allowing the backdrop of some wonderfully evocative music.
The actors are what you might call unknowns but they deliver a fine ensemble performance with many doubling up as members of a brilliant band. The longer the show went on the louder the response from an almost packed house, singing along with all of the songs we recalled so easily. This was an audience of a certain age whose connection to the music was evident, not least displayed in the fact that the family sat in front of us had come decked out in 1960's period costume.
Not everything was perfect with the show, one of the lead actresses needs to work on her diction when singing but even worse was a character called Carlo, an ice cream seller whose father was from Naples which meant he could try out a nice cod Italian accent but then we discovered he was really from Wolverhampton.
Not to blow my own trumpet, but I have experience of being on stage and deploying the lethal comedy weapon that is a Wolverhampton accent - the actor playing Carlo, Graham Weaver, could not contain the might of this weapon and his accent drifted badly until it landed just south of Liverpool! It was horrendous but...let me try that again...BUT, when Graham Weaver sang Hushabye all was forgiven. The most beautiful singing voice - clear, strong and pitch perfect.
It was a great night in the theatre and everyone had a good singalong and we did all go home very much brighter in spite of the rhythm of the pouring rain and the vicissitudes of life.
If the show comes anywhere near you I recommend you buy a ticket.
As an aside, if you are in London please go and see Shrek:The Musical as Alastair Natkiel is playing the role of Lord Farquaad from the 27th April for one week. He will be brilliant and as he is the most famous person I know in the West End I felt it my duty to let you all share him a little.
OK, I better go and make some progress work wise but I will be singing as I go, why not join me...
Save The Last Dance