Jekyl and Hyde: touring to 30 July and beyond

JEKYLL AND HYDE: Book and Lyrics, Leslie Bricusse, Music Frank Wildhorn
Touring: Till 30 July and beyond
Info: www.kenwright.com
Runs: 2h 35m, one interval
Review: Alexander Ray, Birmingham Hippodrome (05 04 11)

Strong singing in a dramatic tale
In the Bricusse / Wildhorn version of this famous story the social-psychological thrust is clear and vigorous – a man searching for the secrets of our ‘soul’ is released from the straitjacket of social mores into freedom. But he finds freedom unbound by responsibility; although he rids the world of hypocrites, addicted to his unbound freedom, he spins out of control and so must die. As in all good musicals complex ideas are packaged in a simple tale and told in broad-brush strokes.

The production appears a little under-powered in the first half, but this may have more to do with the play’s structure than the performances. Once Jekyll transforms into Hyde, the central role opens out and the show gets a lift.

Marti Pellow gives a strong performance. He sings well in the first half, and though his voice is completely supported, it’s as if he lacks energy – which of course he does because he (as Jekyll) is totally restricted by the society around him. As Hyde he really opens up, showing us the power he’s held in check for so long, his ALIVE is a dramatic revelation. His confusion and pain are clear in his Second Half soliloquy REFLECTIONS

Both the women, Sarah Earnshaw and Sabrina Carter, Emma and Lucy, grab and hold our attention, contrasting well with each other. Their respective duets with Jekyll are musical highspots with their duet together – IN HIS EYES – a moving delight.

The ensemble singing is tough and never a ragged moment; evidenced by their performance of the fiendishly syncopated and stylish MURDER – a number always worth waiting for.

Dr Henry Jekylll / Edward Hyde: Marti Pellow
Lucy: Sabrina Carter
Emma: Sarah Earnshaw
Sir Danvers: David Delve
Utterson: Mark McGee
Lady Beaconsfield / Nellie: Amira Matthews
Simon Stride: Michael Taibi
General Glossop: Martin Dickinson
Sir Archibald Proops: Matt Stevens
Lord Savage / Spider: Jacob Chapman
Bishop of Basingstoke: Jon De Ville
Poole: James Gant
Bisset: Daniel Robinson
Ensemble: Carolyn Maitland
Ensemble: Alexandra Grierson
Ensemble: Grace Gardner
Ensemble / Swing: Rob Copeland
Ensemble/ Swing: Kerri Watt

Director: Martin Connor
Choreographer: Bill Deamer
Musical Director: Tom de Keyser
Musical Supervisor: David Steadman
Set Designer: Mark Bailey
Costume Designer: Jonathan Lipman
Lighting Designer: Nick Richings
Sound Designer: Ben Harrison

2011-04-06 22:09:18

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