Luck Be A Lady by Beth Burrows. The White Bear theatre, Kennington, London SE11 to 3 July 2021. 4****. William Russell

The singer and actress Beth Burrows has com up with a splendidly putting men in their place one woman show with this musical entertainment focusing on three Hollywood greats – Astaire, Kelly and Sinatra – and the way the treated women. She has lots of good songs to sing, some fascinating video clips to show of talks they gave in their declining years to audiences when they were presented with lifetime awards, and some revealing quotes from what the women they performed with and loved them on screen have to say about the experience. It is a well executed women’s live matter affair. We see how Astaire, after all those years of playing Ernie to his sister Adele’s Eric in the theatre was firmly resistant once he made it in Hollywood to playing second fiddle and how his leading ladies did not necessarily adore him. Ginger, whose contribution to his stardom was immense, was paid less in all those movie which made them icons and in which she “did what he did in high heels and backwards” got her own back with that quite. Kelly, who comes across as a jolly good bloke was a cruel task master as a dancer and nowhere as nice in life as he appeared on the screen – but he was not the only Hollywood star that is true about – and Sinatra was a lecher. All of them ended up with very young wives, a couple of whom survived their husbands and got the money and also controlled just what the old man did. It is quite vicious in its sugar coated way – the songs provide the sugar and Burrows, who has a good voice does them justice – while the message is in the words. A fringe treat smartly directed by Mark Giesser in which the idols’ feet of clay when it came to women sre exposed in no uncertain terms.

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