|Date||29th April 2016|
|Society||Hereford Musical Theatre Company|
|Venue||The Tomkins Theatre|
|Type of Production||Musical|
|Musical Director||Rob West|
Author: Louise Hickey MBE
This was a debut production for the Director Katie Davis and her Assistant Tracy Roberts and it was with a real ‘feel good show’ that is somewhat a little known gem. The cast of 5 ladies have to go through the gamut of emotions before reaching, what is for some, a happy conclusion: not so much for the others. The complexities of their relationship to each other was explained in a funny and yet touching way that meant that the audience veered from laughing out loud to lump in the throat moments. It was a true testament to the direction and delivery of this musical, set in a Karaoke bar! Oh yes, so that meant the audience were given permission to join in when it was appropriate to do so. This could be viewed as a ‘Ladies’ show but I happen to know that the men in the audience enjoyed it just as much as the ladies did and a certain gentleman of advanced years was up bopping with us at the end too.
Maddy Robinson (Sharon) was very funny and her one-liners were sharp and perfectly timed, and her rendition of ‘I am what I am’ was brilliant. She has a great voice and due to her tender years will be one to watch in the future. Sarah Phillips (Kate) played the straight laced sister who suddenly changed character during their night out with great aplomb and was a very convincing drunk. Her two solo songs were ideal for her especially ‘Cry me a River’ which was very emotional and beautifully sung. Bex Taylor (Carol) was the older sister who has her own problems and had not been close to her sister until the end of the night when the story unravels. Bex did a good job as the outraged sister. Her solo ‘Don’t Cry out loud’ was sung with real pathos Amber Alexander (Liza) was the friend with everything who thinks she has nothing, especially a loving husband that she didn’t appreciate. Amber portrayed the character very well and got to sing a couple of fabulous solo’s too. Clare Martin (Anita) played the slightly neurotic anti-depressant pill popping, slightly maniacal, friend in the group who won our hearts from the start of the show when she took her coat off to reveal the Superwoman costume underneath that was never mentioned. Her flashback to the table-top episode with the breadsticks stuck in her ears and a pizza on her head was hysterical. Even when she sang her solo’s she stayed completely in character which can’t have been easy considering the great songs she had to sing.
I particularly enjoyed the obvious bond that had formed by the 5 ladies to give a real impression of lasting friendship wort’s and all. Well done to everyone, cast, production and front of house team, for a great girls night.