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BrumHour was invited to see Singin’ in the Rain by The Alexandra.
For Brum Radio’s Interval Theatre, Dave Massey spoke to cast and creatives of Singin’ in the Rain. Listen back here:
By Dave Massey twitter.com/BrumHour
This production contains themes of misogyny and strobe lighting.
Singin’ in the Rain at The Alexandra
Director and Choreographer Pollyann Tanner, Written by Betty Comden and Adolph Green, Songs by Nacio Herb Brown and Arthur Freed
The 2019 Alexandra Stage Experience is Singin’ in the Rain and this youth-focused cast offers a fun-filled tale of old Hollywood movies and dealing with change.
Don Lockwood (Ben Tanner) and Lina Lamont (Jessica Walton) are silent movie stars in Hollywood and the press is full of stories of their alleged romance, Lina seems to dream of a life with Don. One day in a park Don meets Kathy Selden (Isabella Kibble) a stage actress who seems to take more than an instant dislike to him. Whilst Don and Lina are silent movie stars, they have a problem, a talking picture has been created by a rival studio. Don and his lifelong friend Cosmo Brown (Sam Rogers) realise that Lina won’t be able to make an easy transfer to talking pictures. And hatch a plan…
I adored this youthful production with its huge supporting cast, there were nearly one hundred performers on stage at different points, this is a variety style production, with dancing, singing and traditional London Palladium style stunts, tap-dancing and kicking water into the audience. It’s easy to see why the skilled choreography and direction of Pollyann Tanner has been called for year upon year.
Scene stealing Jessica Walton’s nauseating starlet accent is fantastic as she embodies the threatened movie star and struts around the set throwing power. Sam Rogers and leading actor Ben Tanner are great as the men coping with change, they act like childhood friends and their tap sequences exudes class. Isabella Kibble with her powerful West End voice is perfect for the old Hollywood style.
My favourite song number, apart from Singin’ in the Rain itself, was actually Moses Supposes, full of tongue twisters to challenge the performers. Other well known songs to be found here include Good Morning, You were meant for Me and Make ’em Laugh.
Yes, it rains on stage! TWICE! And it is glorious. The sets and music compliment this cast easily from the park to the movie set, there are also fun pre-filmed inserts to represent the silent movies. My only issue was with the strobe light which was quite harsh and meant I had to cover my eyes during a vital number.
Like many musicals from the 60s and 70s, the production has a long first half at 90 minutes with a 45 minute second half. Bathroom break planning is essential.
A great effort by everyone involved, the audience loved seeing these performers on stage, I could see Mom’s and Dad’s right down the front encouraging their kids right at the curtain call.
Singin’ in the Rain is at The Alexandra until 24th September. Book tickets with BrumHour’s affiliate link >> HERE <<.
The Alexandra Theatre is part of The Ambassador Theatre Group (ATG Tickets). Until 5th September ATG TheatreCard is offering £20 off their annual classic membership. Normally £45, The ATG TheatreCard Classic is available using #BrumHour’s affiliate link >>HERE<< for just £25 when you purchase with Debit/Credit Card.
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When not writing about theatre for BrumHour, or producing Interval Theatre for Brum Radio (Tuesdays 3pm) brumradio.com/intervaltheatre,
Dave Massey can be found eating crisps and claiming to be at the gym. And tweeting about Birmingham for #BrumHour.