Monday, September 26

Tag: Bill Kenwright

Dreamboats & Petticoats: Bringing On Back The Good Times – Blackpool Grand
North West

Dreamboats & Petticoats: Bringing On Back The Good Times – Blackpool Grand

Dreamboats & Petticoats: Bringing On Back The Good Times is a follow on from the original feel good juke box musical. I had no idea what to expect this evening, but I assumed that the production would be very similar to previous DreamBoats & Petticoats productions, it was also a juke box musical and it did feature the same central characters and songs from the golden era of Rock’ n’ Roll, such as ‘To Sir With Love’ ‘Palisades Park’ and ‘Is This The Way To Amarillo’ The story tells of Laura (Elizabeth Carter) a successful singer and her partner on their number one hit record Dreamboats and Petticoats’ Bobby (Jacob Fowler) who has decided to re-join his former group Norman and The Conquests at St Mungo’s Youth Club. This is where the majority of the production is set, the other h...
Dreamboats & Petticoats – King’s Theatre Glasgow
Scotland

Dreamboats & Petticoats – King’s Theatre Glasgow

On the hottest day ever (so far!) I hauled myself along the M8 to Glasgow to this touring show. The question was – would it, could it, bring back the good times at the King’s this week? The third instalment of Bill Kenwright’s Dreamboats and Petticoats franchise, set in the mid 1960’s and following the trials and tribulations of rock ‘n roll band, Norman and the Conquests, from youth club dive to Butlins at Bognor Regis, aka ‘bonking by the sea’. At the centre of the story is the ongoing relationship of Laura and Bobby played by Elizabeth Carter and Jacob Fowler, can their love survive a Summer apart, can Bobby resist the wall-to -wall crumpet of Butlins and will Laura escape the clutches of Frankie Howard where she is booked for the Summer season at the Palace Theatre Torquay? This...
Dreamboats and Petticoats – Palace Theatre
North West

Dreamboats and Petticoats – Palace Theatre

Bill Kenwright’s and Laura Mansfield’s presentation of Dreamboats and Petticoats opened for its one week run of the 2022 tour at the magnificent Manchester Palace Theatre. This juke box musical is written around a compilation of hit songs from the late 1950’s and early 1960’s, the storyline is thin but still noteworthy where we see a group of youngsters trying to make a success of their musical careers. Laura (Elizabeth Carter) the most successful of the group and her beau Bobby (David Ribi) who has taken a backstep from the limelight due to stage fright. The couple take summer jobs Laura alone in Torquay and Bobby in Butlin’s Bognor Region with the rest of the gang. Another significant coupling in the script is Norman (Alastair Hill) a cool and flirtatious lead singer and the mother o...
Saturday Night Fever – Peacock Theatre
London

Saturday Night Fever – Peacock Theatre

A homage to the 1977 film, Saturday Night Fever musical makes a comeback on the West End. Produced and directed by Bill Kenwright, the stage adaptation is by Robert Stigwood in collaboration with Bill Oakes. The show traces the story of a young Tony Manero (played by Richard Winsor) as he navigates through his day job and complications in his personal life while aspiring to be the king of disco. He is confronted with the discovery of the personal life of his dance partner, Stephanie (played by Olivia Fines), messy relationships with his friends and a complicated atmosphere at home. Holding potential for nuance, the storyline is quite basic - it is the music and dancing that hold the show together. The iconic music is given its due credit, with Jake Byrom, Oliver Thomson and James Hudso...
Blood Brothers – Birmingham Hippodrome
West Midlands

Blood Brothers – Birmingham Hippodrome

Wagner’s “Das Rheingold” famously opens with one long, droning tone from the orchestra which engages, entrances and thrills in equal measure. “Blood Brothers” employs the same technique and hits exactly the same, as it were, note. We are drawn into a dark and tragic world where the outcome of the plot is set out as clearly as the two dead two bodies laying before us. This is the plot spoiler of all plot spoilers but, oddly, though we know the end we want to know why it happened. Not a whodunnit, but a whydunnit? And so, the drone draws us in… My first Mrs. Johnston was Kiki Dee, which for all you BB buddies out there, means I saw it quite early on in its humungous run. Barbara Dickson did it first, of course, in a version that didn’t take off. Bill Kenwright sprinkled his Liverpudlian ...
Paul Taylor-Mills returns to The Other Palace
NEWS

Paul Taylor-Mills returns to The Other Palace

Bill Kenwright appoints his long-standing collaborator, Paul Taylor-Mills, to be Artistic Director of The Other Palace. Paul Taylor-Mills returns to the venue, following a previous role as Advisory Producer from 2016 - 2018, while it was owned by Andrew Lloyd-Webber. Paul launches his season of work for The Other Palace with the award-winning Heathers the Musical, which runs from 25th November 2021 – 20th February 2022. Paul Taylor-Mills, Artistic Director, The Other Palace said: “I am absolutely delighted to be returning to The Other Palace as its new Artistic Director and launching my tenure with Heathers the Musical, all under the helm of Bill Kenwright. I have had the pleasure of working with Bill and his incredible team for many years and the opportunity for us to have a London...
The Cat and the Canary – Opera House
North West

The Cat and the Canary – Opera House

With Halloween upon us and the clocks going back at the weekend, our thoughts turn to entertainment of the scary variety, therefore an old-fashioned thriller set in a creepy house should be just what is required as the nights draw in. Unfortunately, the production of 'The Cat and the Canary' which began its week-long run at the Manchester Opera House this evening was a huge disappointment. As a thriller it wasn't scary, as a comedy it wasn't funny, and it wasn't camp enough to be interesting as a pastiche of the genre. Based on the 1921 play by John Willard and adapted by Carl Grose, the production wore its 100 years heavily, with the usual tropes that one would associate with a thriller of this vintage. Creepy old mansion - check; assortment of characters assembled and trapped against...
Heathers the Musical – Theatre Royal Haymarket
London

Heathers the Musical – Theatre Royal Haymarket

You know when you wake up the next day singing the songs that you have seen a good musical. Those little ear worms working away overnight, doing what they do best and making sure the tunes continuously occupy our minds long into the next day and beyond. A great musical connects with its audience, involves them, allows them to care about the characters they are seeing and to become invested in what is happening to them regardless of the subject matter. THAT is exactly what ‘Heathers the Musical’ does. As a result, its high energy music, and quirky, easily memorable, witty book are fast developing a cult following. Produced by Bill Kenwright and Paul Taylor-Mills, this high-octane black-comedy rock musical, based on one of the greatest cult teen films of all time, starring Winona Ryder a...
Casting is Unveiled For The Wildest Show In Town…..
NEWS

Casting is Unveiled For The Wildest Show In Town…..

Greetings, salutations and welcome to the West End 2021 class of Westerberg High! Leading the cast in the highly celebrated return of Heathers the Musical in the West End is Christina Bennington (Bat Out Of Hell) in the role of high school geek Veronica Sawyer and Jordan Luke Gage (& Juliet) as the dark and moody teen, Jason Dean (JD). In the eponymous roles of ‘The Heathers’ is returning cast member Jodie Steele (Six) with her critically acclaimed portrayal of ‘mega bitch’ Heather Chandler, alongside Bobbie Little (Jesus Christ Superstar) as Heather Duke and Frances Mayli McCann (Evita) as Heather McNamara. They are joined by Lauren Ward (Fleming/Veronica’s Mother), Madison Swan (Martha...
Love Letters becomes the first socially distanced play… for the second time!
NEWS

Love Letters becomes the first socially distanced play… for the second time!

Bill Kenwright presents the anticipated return of A.R. Gurney’s heart-warming play Love Letters to the Theatre Royal Haymarket for a strictly limited season of only 32 performances from 19th May – 13th June 2021. Directed by Roy Marsden, Love Letters received probably its best ever reviews when Martin Shaw and Jenny Seagrove were reunited in the play last year. Their special chemistry led to highly acclaimed performances in this uplifting tale of long-distanced love and enduring friendship. The critically lauded production of Love Letters originally opened at the Theatre Royal Haymarket to a clamour of four star reviews on 3rd December 2020. It was the first post-lockdown play to open in the West End since the pandemic began, before sadly being forced to close on 14th December due t...