This isn’t a sponsored post.
BrumHour saw My Fair Lady at Bristol Hippodrome at the invite of Birmingham Hippodrome.
By Dave Massey twitter.com/BrumHour
This production features misogyny plus classist language and behaviour of its time.
Preview Review: My Fair Lady at Bristol Hippodrome coming soon to Birmingham Hippodrome
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐A spectacular spectacular!
Directed by Bartlett Sher, book and lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner, music by Frederick Loewe, adapted from Pygmalion
The UK tour of My Fair Lady arrives at Birmingham Hippodrome from 8th to 19th March 2023 for its penultimate stop in its current UK and Ireland tour, and for BrumHour, I was lucky enough to be invited down to Bristol to see this production at Bristol Hippodrome ahead of its Birmingham dates.
Internationally famous linguistic scholar, Henry Higgins (Michael D. Xavier) meets underclass flower seller Eliza Doolittle (Charlotte Kennedy) in the street, he makes such an impression on her that she turns up at his home sometime later asking for elocution lessons. Henry makes a bet, in front of Eliza, with his professional friend Colonel Pickering (John Middleton) that he can fool the aristocracy that Eliza is a very well-to-do lady.
This is a hugely enjoyable production which easily harks back to its Broadway and West End roots. I’d only seen single songs from My Fair Lady on tv at Royal Variety Performances rather than having seen the whole show, so I was surprised how the story plays out.
The cast is complemented by the inclusion of the wonderful Lesley Garrett as housekeeper Mrs Pearce and scene-stealing Adam Woodyatt as Alfred P. Doolittle. Whilst I’d love to hear more of Lesley’s singing voice in this production, it was wonderful to see Adam Woodyatt stepping out beyond his EastEnders character particularly during Get Me to the Church on Time. Despite his beard, Adam has an unmistakable voice which still sounds younger than the character he is playing. Both are excellent in these supporting roles. Our leads are great too Charlotte Kennedy and Michael D. Xavier exude talent and their on-stage relationship is feisty and fun.
There are several sets used in this show but the main one is a huge rotating house with its spiral stairs, shower room and even room for a secret nook for the maids to steal kisses with the local copper. Michael D. Xavier is clearly too tall for the spiral stairs and seeing him lean every time he ascends or descends is amusing for his character.
You will be signing the songs for days afterwards, which is always a great sign and this production has some brilliant moments during its three-hour (including interval) running time.
A five star spectacular spectacular, My Fair Lady is at Birmingham Hippodrome from 8th to 19th March 2023 with performances at 2pm and 7pm (Not 2.30pm and 7.30pm!) Book tickets here: birminghamhippodrome.com/calendar/my-fair-lady.