15th June 2018
Devonshire Park Theatre Eastbourne
Type of Production
Author: Brenda Gower
This is a full-on show which started with a bang with the orchestra getting us in the mood for what was to come. The orchestra made a loud but excellent sound, never drowning the singing and it’s always great to have musicians of that calibre in the pit.
Claire Robinson was on fire as Dolly Levi, giving her character all the verve required and always adding a touch of humanity. A great performance from Clem Jackson as Horace Vandergelder – an irascible character who resisted Dolly until the very end!
Casey Dearing gave us an Irene Molloy with a lovely voice and great acting ability, accompanied by Josie Mead as Minnie Fay – a really endearing character.
Director Keith Smith stepped into the role of Cornelius Hackl at very short notice and made an ideal pairing with Chris Smith as Barnaby Tucker, both giving everything they had in playing these energetic parts.
Sebastien Sinclair-Ziaifard and Emily Wright completed the principals’ line-up playing Ambrose Kemper and Ermengarde in excellent fashion.
Energy abounded from the ensemble which included Linda Kinghorn and Tiffany Da Silva as Ernestina and Mrs Rose, with Michael Elliott, Oliver Price and Richard Fisher playing the parts of Rudolph, Stanley and the Judge. The standard of the choreography and the amazing acrobatic dancing was excellent. The singing from everyone was also of a very high standard.
The scenery worked very well indeed and the fan designed cloth was a delight to see. The wardrobe team are to be congratulated for the turn of the 20th century look, as well as all those behind the scenes doing everything necessary to make this show enjoyable.
The programme was colourful, interesting and informative and all involved in any way, whether on or off stage, should be very proud to have brought this show to Eastbourne’s lovely Devonshire Park Theatre.
Special thanks are due to Director Keith Smith, Musical Director Carl Greenwood and Choreographer Teresa Smith for all their hard work.