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BrumHour saw The Good Enough Mums Club at the invite of Birmingham Hippodrome.
For Brum Radio’s Interval Theatre, Emily Beecher spoke about her role in bringing The Good Enough Mums Club to Birmingham Hippodrome. Listen below:
By Dave Massey twitter.com/BrumHour
This production features very strong language and deals with themes of bereavement, racism and depression.
Review: The Good Enough Mums Club at Birmingham Hippodrome
⭐⭐⭐⭐”Important storytelling with fun songs”
Directed by Sarah Meddows and Michelle Payne. Book and Lyrics (and created by) Emily Beecher, Music by Verity Quade
Bea (Joanna Kirkland) has been running a local toddler group for several years with a small group of mums including Michelle (Rebecca Bernice Amissah) Sophie (Amy Ross), Chantel (Jade Samuels) and Esme (Belinda Wollaston). Each of the mothers have their own lives to deal with and as the story progresses we delve into each of their lives.
It’s very easy to compare elements of this production to more established touring productions but that’s probably a testament to it. Each character gets their own fleshed-out story-telling song and story development. As a musical comedy-drama, it has plenty to say for itself, from daft everyday jokes to strong powerful moments that bring the group together to unite. It finds fun humour in its circumstances and doesn’t shy away from the details of actually having a baby or being a new parent.
This is a homegrown production from Birmingham Hippodrome and it is great to see them cultivating stories like this. As a city theatre it’s lovely to feature characters who live in big cities rather than provincial productions which seem to feature small villages or towns. I felt like I knew these characters far better than in other productions.
Jade Samuels leans into her Birmingham accent and that makes me feel seen on stage, her character Chantel also fun, cheeky and quite graphic. Belinda Wollaston‘s character Esme is much more timid in the first half as we learn about her but he vocals blast through the studio theatre making us feel every word she sings.
Rebecca Bernice Amissah character Michelle has twins, and you feel the stress and anxiety of a mother about to reach the end of her patience. Then there is Amy Ross‘ Sophie who on the surface looks like everything is just fine. Meanwhile, Joanna Kirkland‘s leader Bea immediately starts showing the cracks of having an absent partner when she humble brags about how amazing he is. I also really enjoyed seeing these actors switch into playing their own kids.
The set is quite large and features four or five clear zones for the action to take place, the lighting also has LED strips which are used with great effect at very key moments not just lighting the areas but highlighting plot elements.
Following its time at Birmingham Hippodrome’s Patrick Studio this production heads on tour. Find out more about the UK tour here: goodenoughmumsclub.com/book. Discover what is coming up at Birmingham Hippodrome here: birminghamhippodrome.com/whats-on