High Society

Date 13th May 2014
Society Winchester Musicals & Opera Society
Venue Theatre Royal Winchester
Type of Production Musical
Director Liz Petley-Jones
Musical Director Keith Pusey
Choreographer Louise Hodson

Report

Author: Margaret Fields

This production can best be described as sensational!

The very stylish set came to life as the overture began and the servants quietly came on stage. The “High Society” theme seamlessly led into “Ridin’ High” sung by Katie Hickson, as a very elegant Tracy Lord. Then a stream of fabulous Cole Porter songs followed, each one performed perfectly by the very talented cast.Dexter, played by Dan Hickson, came across as a very warm, charming character. He and Katie were a great couple with some excellent singing and believable dialogue. Adrian Hickford and Suzanne Hall (Mile and Liz) were also a well matched couple. “Who Wants to be a Millionaire” was well sung and choreographed and Adrian’s version of “You’re Sensational” was lovely.

Laura Pirret was a splendid little sister and her duet with Tracy was extremely funny. Penny Bullough was a staid Mother Lord. She was very amusing when she “let her hair down” after the party and Seth Hellard was a rather dignified Father Lord. Peter Barber was a super Uncle Willie, thoroughly enjoying himself in a very non-PC way, and his “Say it with Gin” was a delight. Charlie Hellard was good as the stuffy George.

There were so many favourite moments in the show. “Just One of Those Things” was nicely interpreted and “Well, Did You Evah?” was a superb ensemble piece. “Let’s Misbehave” was brilliant. The chorus was fabulous throughout and the high jinks in the kitchen were dazzling, with excellent choreography and execution by the staff – I do love a bit of tap!

The orchestra was super. Keith Pusey must be congratulated on not only getting that real Cole Porter sound but also letting us hear the fabulous lyrics. Sound and lighting were good throughout and I was very impressed by the set. It was so versatile with scene changes accomplished in seconds. The costumes were excellent and Tracy’s dresses were absolutely gorgeous.

Liz Petley-Jones did a fantastic job. It was such a stylish, lively colourful production and everyone involved should be congratulated.