Image by Steve Thoroughgood via FlickrWhistle Down The Wind
Theatre Royal June 1 2010
Even before the curtain opened you knew that something special was going to be undertaken.
Theatre Royal in Newcastle has the intimate setting of conjuring up an appetite for fantastic live entertainment.
Tonight was to be no exception.
Andrew Lloyd Webber's fantastic tale of story and song, centred on a religious family, going thro a period of mourning, but before long a mysterious stranger to the town, who secretly befriends a few of them, turns their lives, and others upside down. This is set in bible-belt Louisiana in the 1950's, but could easily have been more contemporary in today's Facebook and MSN lifestyle, where you are not always sure of who,when,what and where
I am a fan of the X-factor, but wasn't necessarily a fan of G4, but Jonathon Ansell, who starred on the programme made a fine transition from opera singing boy band member to acting and singing his heart out, as the Man in this production,Carly Bawden who plays Swallow, has a fantastic singing voice that would put any of today's top 40 'pop stars' to shame
The props and the stage design are fantastic, you could almost imagine yourself in the barn where the Man was hiding or in the town where the folk danced and sung, no wonder this production has been argued as being the best since Webber's Phantom of the Opera,the lighting and the musical score is spot on, as you would expect from Bill Kenwright's and David Steadman direction.
The large cast of this show, held their heads and voices high, as they rattled through the many familiar songs such as "No Matter What", and the very impressive "Tyre Tracks and Broken Hearts",my personal favourite being the Meatloaf esque "A Kiss is a Terrible Thing to Waste"
If Simon Cowell had of been in the audience then I am sure his vote would have been captured not only by Ansell, but the whole of this wonderful production, the passion that the stage can give you, will live with you forever..
"So whistle down the wind, for I have always been right there"..
Whistle Down The Wind is right here...it is in your own backyard, go out and see it, it is not to be missed..!!!