|Date||24th February 2017|
|Society||Centrestage Productions Youth Theatre|
|Venue||The Point, Eastleigh|
|Type of Production||Musical|
|Musical Director||Nigel Finch|
|Choreographer||Harry Andreou and Lisa McGreal|
Author: Mark Allen
Arrived ten minutes before curtain up to a packed lobby, and immediately greeted by Mr Leech who directed me with a welcome smile to the box office where my tickets and programme was awaiting my collection. There was a real buzz and excitement as I took my seat in a packed auditorium.
The lights dimmed and the overture set off with great aplomb under the experienced direction of their MD, Nigel Finch. The front cloth rose and we were greeted by the principals and girls' chorus, and although it was well rehearsed and delivered with real enthusiasm, the sound was not right and I struggled to hear the words and thereby for the first part found difficulty in following the story. However looking past the sound issues this did not detract from the work put in by Maddison Cooper (Elle Woods) ant the rest of her Delta Nu’s. She played the role of the glitzy “blonde” very well. The Californian “whatever” accents did begin to grate but that’s part of the piece and the expectation (must be an age thing!) The Dance numbers were well choreographed by Harry Andreou and Lisa McGreal and, given the overall size of the cast and chorus, the effects were really really impressive.
The set was a large but really added to the whole experience and was well lit. the scene changes were slick and if there were any mistakes then these went unnoticed
The first act proceeded at quite a lick, and all played their parts very well, however I must compliment Ebony Deas as Paulette whose comic timing in an obviously comedic role added much to the overall production. Equally Luke Barker as Emmet Forrest, the quiet downtrodden assistant to the scary Callahan (Tyler Convery) grew as the show carried on. Live dogs, very brave, almost stole the show. Almost……..
The second act again was fast paced, funny, great dance routines and it is quite evident that from the lead principals right through the whole company that Centrestage are a group that really enjoy themselves and this shows in the performance they gave. This enthusiasm has to come from the direction of the Director Mike Mullen and his Creative team. Again, well done.
The enthusiastic audience gave a standing ovation at the conclusion, and I left thoroughly entertained. Thank you.
Well done Centrestage, a great start to 2017, and proof that youth theatre is strong, alive and well in Hampshire.