Monday, June 24

Tag: Jake Quickenden

The Full Monty – Opera House, Manchester
North West

The Full Monty – Opera House, Manchester

On Tuesday evening I had the pleasure of watching the comedic triumph ‘The Full Monty’ at the Manchester Opera House. Our director (Michael Gyngell), the show’s designer (Jasmine Swan) and the producer (David Pugh) has immense shoes to fill, and certainly did not disappoint. Being incredibly familiar with the show, and having watched it previously in an amateur capacity, I was very much looking forward to this brand new adaptation, featuring some well-known faces.  The musical is cleverly adapted from the late 90’s British film of the same name, six unemployed Northern steelworkers, all low on cash, decide to present a strip act, for one night only, their local conservative club after seeing their wives' enthusiasm for a touring company of Chippendales. Danny Hatchard played the pro...
The Full Monty – The Alexandra
West Midlands

The Full Monty – The Alexandra

Most people know one thing about The Full Monty, it’s about a group of men who decide to be male strippers. There is however a whole lot more to this brilliant show than that. The themes in this play are as relevant now as they were when the story was first written. As the redundant steel workers struggle to make ends meet and deal with unemployment in their own ways, we are shown a realistic portrayal of the struggles faced by anyone in that position. Each character has his issues, Gaz the laddish, confident rogue played with gusto and heart by Danny Hatchard, who would do anything for his son. Dave (Neil Hurst) dealing with weight problems and rock bottom self-esteem and Gerald (Bill Ward) trying desperately to hide his unemployment from his wife and the world. These and the other me...
The Full Monty – Winter Gardens, Blackpool
North West

The Full Monty – Winter Gardens, Blackpool

A classic from 1997, The Full Monty is ranked as one of the best British films of the 20th century by The British Film Institute. It tells the tale of six recently unemployed men from Sheffield, all with different stories to tell, desperate to make ends meet in a post-Thatcher Britain. For various reasons, the men have lost hope but unite in the most unlikely of ways to forge themselves a better future… by taking their kit off! I was very pleasantly surprised with Simon Beaufoy’s adaptation of his film script. Celebrating the film’s 25th Anniversary with this tour, the play remains faithful to the film, whilst making it appropriate for the stage. Despite being very funny, it deals with many of the original hard-hitting themes such as depression, body image, sexual equality, homosexuali...
The Full Monty – Bradford Alhambra
Yorkshire & Humber

The Full Monty – Bradford Alhambra

The Full Monty was one of a group of films shining a light on the traumatic impact Thatcherism had on Northern communities, but unlike the risible Billy Elliot it did it by never pulling its punches. Simon Beaufoy has adapted his movie script for a stage version of how six jobless Sheffield blokes fought back to become unlikely strippers and let it all hang out to pay off their debts. The stage version is far funnier than the film, although it still tackles some big themes including class, suicide, ageism, body shaming, gay visibility, and the utter corrosion of the human spirit when you’re cast on the scrapheap. Beaufoy wisely still holds it together round the core theme that hope can spring from despair in often the most unlikely of ways like getting your kit off. For fans of the ...
Footloose – Edinburgh Playhouse
Scotland

Footloose – Edinburgh Playhouse

Footloose tells the musically infused tail of wayward Ren and his journey from Chicago to rural backwater Bomont. A town tragedy involving the loss of the preacher’s son results in a town-wide ban on dancing in the bible-led town. Really? Oh yes. For newly arrived Ren and the preacher’s rebellious daughter Ren, this is devastating, especially as romance blossoms and the desire to dance ensues. But more interestingly, Ren embraces Christianity and uses a newly gifted bible to argue his cause for dancing which is a rather impressive move. Footloose is your classic jukebox musical complete with hits of the day spattered throughout the production for some dramatic and often comic effect. West-End star Darren Day relishes the spotlight as tough preacher Rev. Shaw Moore. In fact, his perform...
Footloose – The Alexandra
West Midlands

Footloose – The Alexandra

Go cut loose down at The Alexandra Theatre Birmingham where Footloose has unashamedly danced its way into town. This fan favourite musical promises to be a smash hit. This musical is based on the 1984 film of the same name, with music by Tom Snow, lyrics from Dean Pitchford, and the book by Pitchford and Walter Bobbie. The show tells the story of Ren McCormack, an ordinary teen from Chicago who moves to a small town where dancing is banned. Ren attempts to overturn this ban and convince the town to get on its feet, resulting in moments of hilarity, triumph, and self-discovery. The music stole the show for me with classic 80s hits including Holding Out for a Hero, Almost Paradise, Let's Hear It for the Boy and of course the unforgettable title track Footloose. The iconic songs had th...
Footloose – Winter Gardens, Blackpool
North West

Footloose – Winter Gardens, Blackpool

This week sees the return of 1980’s screen sensation ‘Footloose.’ The Blackpool leg of the tour was due to begin on Monday 11th April, but the cast and crew have struggled to put on some performances due to Covid, they had five casting covers this evening, so that considered they did a good job putting the show on.  The theatre was sadly quite empty, which has been the case on my last few visits to The Winter Gardens. A multitalented cast featuring several leads and ensemble also playing live instruments. For me the music stole the show. It’s so nice to see live musicians onstage and the timeless classics Let’s Hear it For The Boy, Holding Out For a Hero’ and of course the title track itself were highlights of the evening. Some lovely moments of comedy provided by the large ...
Footloose – Manchester Opera House
North West

Footloose – Manchester Opera House

Hooray theatre land is beginning to get back to some normality after being hit hard by the pandemic, for the first time there was no need for Covid passes or compulsory wearing of masks. For that alone there was a heightened sense of excitement, and it was clear theatre goers are feeling more confident to mix as the Opera House in Manchester was packed to the rafters with barely one seat empty. Footloose the musical is the brainchild of Dean Pitchford and Walter Bobby with Music from Tom Snow it’s based on the 1984 film which starred Kevin Bacon as city boy Ren McCormack (played by Joshua Hawkins), who arrives with his mother Ethel (Geri Allen) in Beaumont from Chicago in a rebellious mood after learning of the town’s dancing ban. The ban came following an incident five years prior ...