|Date||15th February 2020|
|Society||Workington Amateur Operatic Society|
|Type of Production||Musical|
|Musical Director||Liz Condron|
Author: Ed McGee
Workington Amateur Operatic Society
It was a pleasure to review your junior production of Oliver. It was lovely to see a full house in the Carnegie Theatre.
The simplicity of the set enabled the production to move at a good pace throughout. This was achieved with a permanent bridge with different playing levels, and the slick use of small inset scenes. The use of the white cyc, instead of a backcloth, updated the feel of the production allowing the use of clever lighting to interpret the different scenes. The sound was generally good throughout. Credit must go to the costume team - the costumes, shoes and hairstyles were in period at all times.
It was clear the company were enjoying themselves.The energy and enthusiasm shown by every single one of them was tangible throughout the performance. All the ensemble numbers were very well sung and performed, every single performer were moving completely in step, notably in "Food Glorious Food", and "Consider Yourself". I particularly liked the way they ebbed and flowed on and off stage making the scenes look very believable, particularly in "Who Will Buy".
All the main principals gave very strong convincing portrayals of their respective characters and their accents were generally good. Cole Walker was suitably plaintiff and very believeable playing the role of Oliver, his rendition of "Where is Love" was very moving. Jack Hawley was an excellent Artful Dodger, his performance of "Consider Yourself" along with Oliver was superb. I enjoyed Chloe Steadman’s interpretation of Nancy, she showed both the vulnerable and strong side of the character, and she did all her musical numbers justice. Andrew McMinn, gave a very convincing performance as Fagin, his rapport with the gang of orphans, particularly during "Pick a Pocket or Two", was excellent. His singing of "Reviewing the Situation" was outstanding. Kieron O’Hagan as Bill Sikes, along with bulldog ‘Kearsley’, were very good, and his singing of "My Name" showed off his menacing character .
All other characters were equally well performed and there were some lovely cameo roles. All of this made for a well rounded production. The musical combo led by Liz Condron performed well. Tony McGee as Director and Robyn Miller as Choreographer should feel very proud of their achievements.WELL DONE to each and every one of you.