Date 20th May 2014
Society Urmston Musical Theatre
Venue St Anthonys College
Type of Production Revue
Director Emma Harris
Musical Director Ed Nurse
Choreographer Various


Author: Kevin Proctor

This year, Urmston Juniors follow popular trend by presenting a musical theatre revue which is always a great advantage to showcase strengths within any membership – and this did just that.
I appreciate that revue shows, to the performer, can often feel like performing in a talent show which has the daunting trait of exposing a performer to the utmost intensity, you could say a revue show is an exhibition of what the performers have to offer which can be terrifying, remarkably - this cast showed no evidence of fear which is a testament of excellent confidence and preparation instilled into the cast by the production team.

The evening was an assortment of modern mainstream musical theatre presenting numbers from shows which are either on in London’s West End or have professional tours out in the UK, the offering was well balanced in terms of styles and genres which incorporated ample dance and vocal opportunities.
I particularly valued that each member of the cast had at least one shining moment to sing or perform something solo which is, again, another nod to the production team for enforcing this and also to the cast who enthused a strong team delivery.

Particularly for productions such as this, it doesn’t always seem fair to single people out and doing so is made even more difficult given that this is a youth show, however, as is the case with any production - some performances will always stand out and for me, Ella Kirk’s performance of ‘Somebody To Love’ was a highlight as was Dominic Smith who demonstrated impressive performance skills in the various sections he was used – I hope now, that taking part in this production and with the positive feedback I'm certain they would have been given will install some much needed confidence in them, physically - their body language did communicate too modest for the level they demonstrated – more stage presence and fierce ‘attack’ when they perform is what’s needed to take them to the next rank to make their performance visually exciting and engaging.
Isabelle Cross is undoubtedly a star in the making, she has excellent command when performing, it was evident that she was enjoying every minute of her time on stage which was infectious making her performance highly entertaining.

The job of the Musical Director is quite often thankless in a revue show, the amount of work needed from an MD is extensive and Ed Nurse had done a sterling job and even went to the effort of composing an Overture and Entr’acte which I enjoyed, the band kept the pace moving at a good speed though It was a shame that the sound levels were not well balanced as the band did drown out the soft voices on occasion.

Whenever possible, I try not to attend on an opening night as I often think it’s a bit mean but when we’re in peak season with so many societies doing their shows in the same week it can often be unavoidable – some typical opening night problems were evident but given what they were, I have no doubt these would have ironed themselves out fairly quickly.

Congratulations to Emma Harris, Ed Nurse and everyone who assisted them in staging this energetic production.