Bradford and Touring
The Alhambra, Bradford
Runs until Saturday 7 April 2018
Telephone: 01274 432000
Tour to 20 October
Review: 5 April 2018, Graham Clark
Fresh as a daisy, a feel-good treat.
The film version was one of the most successful films of the 80s, it is little wonder that they have decided to turn the film into this uplifting musical.
This new production still follows the same story line as the film: Steel Worker Alice Owens trying to fulfil her ambitions and aspirations to become a dancer against the dark backdrop of the steel factory where she works.
After a very cumbersome opening sequence where it seemed they were trying too fit in as many songs as they could things began to improve and what story there is so far, begins to unfold.
I got the impression that the mainly middle aged audience were there for the songs that reminded them of their youth. Mind you, with hit songs such as Gloria, What A Feeling, Maniac and I Love Rock n Roll, it was hard to sit still in your seat.
Joanne Clifton – a Strictly Come Dancing champion as Alex Owens was outstanding, her dancing never missed a beat. She replicated the Maniac dance scene from the film with total ease and didn’t even seem to break into a sweat.
Former boy band member Ben Adams as factory boss Nick Hurley complimented Clifton’s voice when the duetted although in his role as Nick Hurley at times it seemed that he did not have the authority to go with the part.
Just when the evening needed a lift, the sequence in the club where they perform the Joan Jett hit, I Love Rock n Roll is performed just at the right time, it gave the show a boost just when it was needed.
The sound throughout the evening was as loud as being at a rock concert, giving the songs more power, not that they needed it.
There are several plots going on at the same time with the second half of the musical improving on the first half. As Joanne Clifton sings as Alice " I’m worried about the world I come from" this rightly sums up the storyline – it is a tale of living one life in two separate worlds.
As Alice wins a place at the dance academy the show comes to a close. With a medley of all the big hits reprised for the finale, the audience are up on their feet.
A feel good show set against a dark backdrop. Get your leg warmers out, dust off your copy of the movie soundtrack and get practicing those dance moves. Highly entertaining.