BUDDY – The Buddy Holly Story: Alan Janes
Runs: 2h 45m, one interval
Information and Booking: www.buddythemusical.com
Review: Rod Dungate, Birmingham Alexandra, Monday 14 November

Never ceases to delight.

The show’s been running a long time, but it’s timeless. Hi-energy performances draw us into the show and Buddy Holly’s throbbing music ensures it doesn’t let us go.

The show’s success lies mainly in the music – recreated afresh each night by a talented group of musicians – but the music isn’t the only thing the show offers. It gives a fleshed out portrait of Buddy; innovative, obstinate, arrogant even, but with a seam of self-belief that enabled him to win through.

It is hard to remember now (but it’s right we are reminded) of the terrible racism which was endemic in the music industry. We learn that Buddy fought against this in his music and in his own life – an unlikely iconoclast through and through. As with many groups, frictions emerge and bands split up – the scene in which Buddy parts from the Crickets is genuinely moving.

Roger Rowley is an excellent Buddy; moving from naivete into confidence with great aplomb. He has a great personality and guitar playing to match. (On some nights the role is played by Glen Joseph.)

Buddy Holly’s life was tragically cut short in an plane crash; with him died The Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens. Both these singers are created with panache by Steve Dorsett and Migeul Angel, who, together with Buddy bring a party atmosphere to the show’s final moments – with fabulous numbers like CHANTILLY LACE and OH BOY.

Not to be missed, either, is Melissa Keyes SHOUT at the Apollo, Harlem.

BUDDY isn’t just alive, it’s well and truly kicking still.

Hipockets Duncan: Gary Trainor
Hayriders: Steve Dorsett, Gavin Barnes, Glen Joseph, Roger Rowley
Buddy Holly: Glen Joseph / Roger Rowley
Joe B Mauldin Christopher Redmond
Jerry Allison: Tom Millen
Radio Engineer: Alex Marshall
Decca Producer: Steve Dorsett

Norman petty: Gavin Barnes
Vi Petty: Katia Sartini
Cindy: Felicity Chilver
DJ at The Apollo: Alex Marshall
Performers at The Allo: Melissa Keyes, Miguel Angel
Maria Elena: Felicity Chilver
Murray Deutch: Gary Trainor
Shirley: Melissa Keyes
Maria’s Aunt: Katia Sartini
The Big Bopper: Steve Dorsett
Richie Valens: Miguel Angel
MC at Clearlake:Gary Traineor
Mary Lou Sloloff: Katia Sartini
Jackdaw: Alex Marshall
Snowbirds: Felicity Chilver, Melissa Keyes, Katia Sartini

Director: Matt Salisbury
Sound Designer; Pete Cox
Designer: Adrian Rees
Lighting Designer: Joe Atkins
Choreographer: Lizzi Gee
Musical Supervisor: Jon Banister

2011-11-15 12:37:19

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