All Together Now

Date 12th November 2021
Society BOS Musical Theatre Company
Venue Stanley High School, Fleetwood Road, Southport
Type of Production Concert
Director Liz Clarke
Musical Director David Wall
Choreographer Steve Chesters, Kim Helm, Mary Forbes, Wendy Harris, Nick Powell

Report

Author: Jim Briscoe

ALL TOGETHER NOW a Concert/Revue performed by BOS Musical Theatre Company at Stanley High School, Fleetwood Road, Southport on Friday, 12th November 2021.

‘All Together Now’ was a ‘Global Event Celebrating Local Theatre’ performed between the 12th/15th November 2021.  Organised through Music Theatre International (MTI), one of the World’s leading theatrical licensing agencies, it granted theatre companies from around the World, both professional and amateur, the rights to perform some of the music from some of the greatest of musicals from Broadway to the West End and beyond.  MTI was founded in 1952 by composer Frank Loesser and orchestrator Don Walker.  This global event was an opportunity for schools and theatre companies from around the globe to produce and perform locally, an exclusive musical revue featuring songsfrom MTI shows.  No royalties or rental fees would be charged, so this would allow all productions to be used as a fundraiser.

Those of us who love and support theatre in its widest forms and more importantly Local Amateur Theatre, could only be encouraged by this concert!  Having spent the best part of eighteen months in lockdown and its various stages, it was so great to be back watching BOS MTC do their thing! There was little or no doubt that, not only the performers, but the societies loyal audience was also ready for this and rewarded the performers with tremendous vocal support and response!

The Production Team of Liz Clarke, Artistic Director; David Wall, Musical Director; Steve Chesters, Kim Helm, Mary Forbes, Wendy Harris and Nic Powell, Choreographers should all be congratulated on their efforts and the results… great concert!

The orchestra under the leadership of Musical Director David Wall included on Keys: Corey Gerrard; Guitar: Mike Ciaputa; Bass: Ben Knowles; Trumpet: Cliff Ray; Trombone/Guitar 2: Adam Dutch; Reeds: Sarah Dutch and Emily MacArthur; Drums: Neil Middleton.  Oh, what a joy it is to hear talented musicians doing what they do best, missed this so much… be proud guys!

The concert was performed in two Acts and narrated by the inimitable Ian Lawson, who kept us abreast of the song choices, the musicals from which the song came and a short storyline behind each of them….

ACT ONE … I was sat at home ‘Writing down the Story of my Life’ when I saw a ‘Meadowlark’, (‘She used to be Mine’), perched on an ‘Empty Chair’.  I immediately realised, ‘This is the Moment’, its ‘Pure Imagination’ – that in ‘The New World’ you have to ‘Seize the Day’ and ‘Spread the Love around’!

ACT TWO… So ‘When I grow up’ in the ‘Beautiful City’ of ‘Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious’.. please ‘Take a chance on Me’; I know that’s ‘Astonishing’ but ‘You Can’t Stop the Beat’!

The Production Team had gathered a talented and enthusiastic cast who were well rehearsed and ready to perform.  It was obvious from the ‘first note to last’ that everyone was thoroughly enjoying themselves being back on stage and performing in front of a live and responsive audience!

The Cast:  Katie Allen, Emily Alty, Olivia Andrews, Zhara Bhatti, Craig Billington, Rebecca Billington, Emily Blinkhorn, Karen Browne, Alan Casserley, Amelia Casserley, Liz Clarke, Lucie Colman, Harry Corcorran, Isabelle Culshaw, Lucy Fish, Mary Forbes, Tom Hallsworth, Wendy Harris, Pam Haworth, Kim Helm, Sam Keen, Rachael Kilpatrick, Heather Lewis, Nick Lloyd, Anne Powell, Nic Powell,  Nathan Power, Phil Power, Estella Reynolds, Isla Rogers, Zac Rogers, Carl Sedman, Dave Sibley, Ben Wake and David Wall.

So, congratulations to each and everyone involved!  It is difficult to start identifying individualperformers and performances, when you know that everyone on stage had given of their best!  But never being one to ‘sit on the fence’ and ‘if I may’, I would like to select MY four favourite songs/performances from the evening… these are purely MY favourites and I’m sure if you spoke to anyone else present, they would probably select others… but these are mine….

  1. Do not ask me why, but I just loved ‘TAKE A CHANCE ON ME’… from the musical ‘Mamma Mia’. It was ‘fun’, ‘light-hearted’, it put a ‘smile to my face’ from start to finish and after the eighteen months that we’ve all just gone through, this just ‘ticked’ all the boxes for me!  So many congrats to Anne Powell, Ben Wake, Liz Clarke, Ian Lawson, Heather Lewis and Phil Power for their performance and to Steve Chesters for some great choreography.
  2. ‘SUPERCALIFRAGILISTICEXPIALIDOCIOUS’ a great interpretation of this classic song from ‘Mary Poppins’.  Sam Keen, Craig Billington, and Anne Powell led the performance with some great vocals supported by the entire cast.  We again had some great choreography by Wendy Harris… another great number!
  3. The Finale - ‘YOU CAN’T STOP THE BEAT’ from the musical ‘Hairspray’.  Led by Olivia Andrews, Lucie Colman, Craig Billington, Tom Hallsworth, Kim Helm plus none other than our ‘singing’ Musical Director David Wall.  They were supported ever so well by the entire company and with some superb choreography from Mary Forbes, this was such a fitting way to end, what had been, a great night!
  4. But, the ‘Show Stealer’ for me was ‘MEADOWLARK’ from the musical ‘The Baker’s Wife’. Kim Helm and Lucie Coleman gave us an outstanding rendition of this beautiful emotional song which I had not heard before!  Their voices blended/complimented each other ever so well and it was ‘sung’ to perfection… be proud ladies, very proud!

The ‘staging’ was minimal as was the ‘lighting’ arranged by Sam Robinson.  The sound did have its moments, but in a ‘new venue’, with so many on stage and so many changes of voice to consider in such short periods of time, I thought Alistair Johnson did a good job.

Thank you so much for inviting me and my wife; for your warm welcome, your hospitality and for allowing me to visit the ‘cast’ backstage after the concert.  Great atmosphere, great night, cannot wait to see you all again soon.

Stay safe, keep well…

Jim Briscoe