The Witches of Eastwick

Date 22nd March 2017
Society Basingstoke Amateur Operatic Society
Venue The Haymarket Theatre, Basingstoke
Type of Production Musical
Director Sue Sampson
Musical Director Jules Dance
Choreographer Harriet Brannam

Report

Author: Chris Horton

THE WITCHES OF EASTWICK is a musical comedy in two acts set in the small New England town of Eastwick and tells the story of three bored and unhappy divorcees who, following a heady brew of martinis,  conjure up the object of their longings – a man.  He arrives in the physical form of Darryl Van Horne and all hell breaks loose, literally.

The main backdrop (the town) worked well and the changes to the various witches’ homes were established by the use of furniture and props and were done simply and swiftly. The magic tricks were cleverly staged and efficiently handled. 

The costumes were fantastic; colourful, vibrant and established the characters. There was great attention to detail ranging from the townspeople, uptight Felicia Gabriel to the gorgeous gowns worn by the witches.

The music, under the direction of Jules Dance was of an extremely high standard. The voices were clear and blended well with the music.

Congratulations to Director Sue Sampson who drew polished performances from the hugely accomplished cast. The talent of all the performers resounded throughout the show; a very strong ensemble.  Rob Wilson was perfectly cast as Darryl who seduced the women one by one and he had a wicked glint in his eye and filled the stage with his charismatic presence.  Each of the women had a big moment.  Wisecracking sculptress Alex (Alex Stores), musician Jane (Danni Stembridge) and reporter, Sukie (Emily Gregory) were immensely appealing as the three witches and all enjoyed themselves especially when they were sent sailing into the New England skies. Kathy May-Miller also shone, especially in her unravelling – as the self-appointed, and uptight, first citizen Felicia Gabriel.

BAOS should be proud to add this show - which was sassy and unsentimental and where murder was played for laughs -  to their list of successes.  The whole evening buzzed with energy and was fun and fabulous.