SISTER ACT: Music Alan Menken, Lyrics Glenn Slater, Book Cheri and Bill Steinkellner
On tour till: 20 10 12
Runs 2h 30m, one interval
Review: Alexander Ray, Birmingham Hippodrome, 10 10 12
Join the party.
It’s like a big, joyous party.
Most of us will know the story – wannabe young female singer has to go on the run after witnessing a murder and ends up hiding out in a convent, where she converts the nuns to the joys of swing, blues, disco and all other forms of up-beat music. And wardrobe to match. And gives them a joy for living, too.
Cynthia Erivo is a fine Doloris. Great singing voice and personality to match. With huge aplomb and equal energy she carries comedy and vocals, she grabs us by our feel-good nerve and never lets us go from start to finish.
The nuns, as a group, are another source of great delight. Each of them is carefully characterised to draw out the greatest humour, and, as the show moves on, we get the additional delight of a chorus of women of all shapes, sizes and ages. Girl (woman) power . . . bring it on!
The show is full of surprises – like the staging of love-struck Eddie’s, I COULD BE THAT GUY (Edward Baruwa).
But it’s the big, ensemble numbers that star. The slow build for the first half closer, TAKE ME TO HEAVEN, the strong opener for the second half, SUNDAY MORNING FEVER (nice joke!) and the finale, SISTER ACT and SPREAD THE LOVE AROUND, in which the costume design (Lez Brotherston) excels itself over and over (and over) again.
Whatever you mood when you go in, you’re guaranteed to feel a lot better on the way out. And here’s your last chance, the tour finishes at the Hippodrome, 20 10 12.
Mother Superior: Denis Black
Monsignor O’Hara: Michael Starke
Deloris Van Cartier: Cynthia Erivo
Sister Mary Robert: Julie Atherton
Eddie Souther: Edward Baruwa
Curtis Jackson: Cavin Cornwall
Pablo: Gavin Alex
Sister Mary Lazarus: Jacquline Clarke
TJ: Tyrone Humtley
Sister Mary Patrick: Laurie Scarth
Joey Daniel Stockton
With: Donovan F Blackwood, Sophia Brown, Livv Evans, Nolan Frederick, Grace Gardner, Allison Harding, Mark Hilton, Sarah Harlington, Natalie Hope, Shirley Jameson, Dean John-Wilson, Kadiff Kirwan, Gemma Knight Jones, Katie Lavelli, Hannah Levane, Kathryn Martin, Joel Mantague, Lucie-Mae Sumner, Dina Tree, Laura Thorogood
Additional Book Material: Douglas Carter Beane
Director: Jerry Zaks
Choreographer: Anthony Van Laast MBE
Set Design: Klara Zieglerova
Costume Design: Lez Brotherston
Lighting Designer: Natasha Katz
Sound Design: Gareth Owen
Orchestrations: Doug Besterman
Dance Music Arrangement: Mark Hummel
Musical Director: Mark Crossland
UK Associate Music Supervisor: Nicholas Skilbeck
Musical Supervisor,Vocal and Incidental Music Arrangements: Michael Kosarin
US Associate Director: Steven Beckler
Associate Set Designer: Andrew Edwards
Associate Costume Designer: Diane Williams
Associate Lighting Designer: Alistair Grant