Anything Goes

Date 11th May 2017
Society Caprian Theatre Company
Venue The Little Theatre, Gateshead
Type of Production Musical
Director Joan Oldfield
Musical Director Enid Stafford
Choreographer Joan Oldfield


Author: Foster Johnson

One can often gauge the success of a show by how quickly the evening passes. If it is not up to the mark the night can drag on internably and you can’t wait for it to finish. Conversely if it is a hit the night seems to fly and it is over in the blink of an eye. So it was the latter case with the Caprian’s offering of Anything Goes. Yes they had the wonderful music and lyrics of Cole Porter in their favour but they still had to deliver.

Deliver they did with a wonderful interpretation of the show that was full of pace, comedy and not least of all some fine acting and singing performances from Principals and well drilled Chorus alike. For this all the hard work that had been put into the show by Director Joan Oldfield and Musical Director Enid Stafford was well rewarded.

With a Principal line up of 18 all with varying degrees of show participation it is not easy to single out some above others for  as a whole they each brought their own interpretation of their particular role which fitted seamlessly and well into the final product. However of these I have to make special mention of a few. Simon Devlin’s  performance as the English Gentleman and Fop Sir Evelyn Oakleigh was outstanding and he made the part his own with  excellent comedic timing.

Not far behind him were Lindsay Kellegher and Gareth Lilley as Reno Sweeney and Moonface Martin respectively. These are the lynchpins of the Show and Lindsay, as she normally does, gave a vibrant interpretation of the role, whilst Gareth, as the Gangster doomed to failure brought his own unique talent to the fore  as the hapless villain.

Andrew Howe (Billy Crocker) and Leanne Wrightson (Hope Harcourt) played the star crossed love interest and the rapport between them on stage worked to perfection ,even taking into account the number of costume changes Billy had undergo in the show to keep the continuity going.

It was also nice to see Caprian stalwarts still to the fore and congratulations to Carol Bannerman and Pam Dias for the performances of Mrs. Harcourt and Bonnie. alike. Also adding to the success of the Show were the lively Reno’s Angels (Samantha Elliott, Laura Reid, Abby Smith and Rachel Tate).

Finally the ladies costumes were super. However if I have one criticism, and I find this generally in all shows,  it is that the women in Societies make much more of an effort when it comes to costumes than the men. Come on gents “don’t spoil the ship for a half penny of tar”