When I researched the show, like I do for all the shows I go and see. This one seemed different. Last night I went to go see ‘Lord of the Dance – Dangerous Games’ at The Ipswich Regent in Ipswich. If I’m honest after researching the show I wasn’t entirely sure whether I would like it or not. But as you will find out later I definitely did!
‘Lord of the Dance’ is a show that tells it’s story solely through dance. There are no lines or acting involved. I’m going to go out and say this right from the start, this show is one hundred percent a visual show. Sadly you would need some form of vision to really understand this show fully. This is the one main down side, I found out that this show has toured many countries and completely sold out! I would like to think, on knowing how big this show is, they would adapt the show for people with Visual Impairments or someone with no vision. But this I can’t tell you for certain. The only downside of the actual show, I never really understood the story. You could tell there was one, in certain scenes like the fighting scenes for example. But apart for that I didn’t really get the story at all.
Moving on the positives, you could immediately tell the high level of dancing standard that is required of all the dancers in the show, because all were absolutely amazing! You could tell it took years of practice and it definitely showed. The high level of visuals were brilliant! They used two LED screens, one giant screen at the back of the stage and one more towards the front, which was used as a platform which the dancers could dance on. The high definition animations were breathtaking, and really made the show more beautiful.
Michael Flately who is the Creator, Producer and Choreographer, is world famous for his energetic and fast dancing and his shows are always sell outs world wide. I’m going to be honest and say that until now, I have never heard of him before. Now I have become a massive fan and I hope I get to see another one of his shows again. When I researched the show I found an interview that he done a few years ago and he said something that completely sums up the point I’m trying to make very nicely, he said: “I wanted to try and make tap dancing popular again!” and he has certainly done that.
If you have some free time go and see this show you will not be disappointed! For all information on the show and to buy tickets – Click Here.
Coming to you with yet another review. Last night, I went to go see ‘Sister Act’ at The Regent Theatre in Ipswich. I arrived around half an hour before the show was due to start, which is normally plenty of time. But sadly not on this occasion. When I arrived at the box office to collect my ticket, the box office staff originally thought I had already picked up my tickets according to their paper work. I explained that I had not done so, so they spent a little time trying to find them. Whist this was going on the the main entrance to the theatre was already starting to fill.
This was opening night, so it was kind of expected. However, once I got my ticket, the crowd got to the point where you could blearily move. This for me is never good, as I find a get very disorientated. I would have liked the theatre as they knew I was coming to maybe notice I was struggling and take me aside so I was out of the massive crowd of people. Whilst waiting for the doors to open, so that we could go to our seats, it was announced that the show was going to be delayed by twenty minutes due to technical problems. So I began to feel slightly more stressed than I already was somewhat feeling. In the end, overall the show didn’t start until thirty minutes after the original time.
The show ‘Sister Act’ starred Alexandra Burke famous for winning the UK singing contest ‘The X Factor’ in 2008. Deloris Van Cartier (played by Alexandra Burke) a disco diva’s life takes a turn for the worst as she witnesses a murder. She goes to the police, and for her own protection they send her into hiding at a Convent. The last place where anyone will think to look. The first act, I felt was slow, and I struggled to get into it. The second act was more up beat and therefore I enjoyed it more than the first. Alexandra’s singing was brilliant, and you could see why she won the singing contest. However, you could also see that acting for her is somewhat of a new thing. I think after a few performances she would get into her stride within the role.
Overall, it was a good night out. I think more organisation in terms of crowd control at the beginning of the show could have been a lot better. I think for an opening night of a show, could have gone a little better. If you want a good night out and some fun, then go and see this show, but I don’t think it is a must see. I came away from the theatre slightly disappointed if I’m completely honest. But I guess, they can’t go all completely to plan can they.
This week, I got the chance to see Footloose – The Musical starring Gareth Gates, Maureen Nolan and making her professional debut Hannah Price. Footloose is the story of Renn, who years after his father left his mother and him to fend for themselves they decide to leave the American city of Chicago and move to a small town called Bomont. Where there after a tragic death of four young teenagers have made it illegal to dance.
So, Renn along with his friends decide to change the law, so they can have a end of school year dance. The staging, lighting, music and vocals were excellent! You feel like you had a real connection to the story.
The theatre this time, was a lot bigger in terms of space, so was not very difficult to get around. I noticed whilst walking around that they had a few extra spaces for wheelchair users which was a nice thing to see. When I arrived, I was greeted by the manager who organises the press tickets at the theatre, he was really polite and friendly, and it felt like he was happy to have me there which is something I always like to experience when I arrive.
The service at the theatre was of a professional standard and I was sure that if I asked for help from a member of staff they would have been more than happy to. On this particular visit, I didn’t have a need to, but it was nice to know that the option was there. The only downside I would have with this particular theatre, is that there was not a massive choice in terms of food and drink. You had the usual alcoholic drinks, soft drinks, chocolate/sweets and crips (chips if you live over the pond). I felt there was very little choice in terms of options. Maybe the theatre would consider having some type of hot food available?
Overall, it was a very good and enjoyable evening. Would I go and see the show again yes, would I rush to go see it…I’m not sure. I’m not saying the show was at all terrible because it honestly wasn’t, I just feel that maybe certain parts of extra things that come with going to the theatre could have maybe been a little better.
Until Next Time,
The VI Critic
(Please note: Trailer is from 2011 and not the current cast!)
Well, I guess what first needs to be said is. Welcome to The VI Critic! I will be posting reviews from shows I go and see from local theatre to London’s West End! But first I need to address the elephant in the room. As many of you can see from the title and bio of this blog is that I am visually impaired. I have a condition call Retinopathy of Prematurity or more commonly know as ROP. In basic simple terms, I have no vision in my right eye at all, and very little vision in my left. I have been like it all my life, but never get it in my way! This post is probably going to be a little extra long, so you have been warned. But it will not be this long normally!
I’ve always had a love for musical theatre, so I thought I would start reviewing shows, but with a slight twist. So I guess I’d better get on with reviewing my first ever show on this blog.
I recently got the chance to go and see ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’ a show adaption from the 1968 film. Featuring TV presenter and comedian Jason Manford as Professor Potts and TV actress Michelle Collins as The Baroness of Vulgaria, at The Cliffs Pavilion Palace in Southend. This particular performance was not a Audio Described performance, but it did not take away the brilliance and splendor of the whole show.
I found the first half of the show to flyby like there was no tomorrow, and I thought at the time I might have been too quick? But looking back on it, the length of the first half was probably the right amount of time. The transitions from one scene to another to be a little too quick. As a audience member I like transitions from scene to scene to be a least a minute or to so you can take in what you’ve just seen and understand the story. The Child Catcher played by Martin Kemp I thought had very little to do with story and only appeared three times throughout the whole show, which I felt was a real shame, but played the role very well. I feel they could have done a lot more with this character. But I got goose bumps every time he came on stage.
The second half of the show was a little longer and was I felt at the right tempo. There were some scenes that were not in the film which I didn’t understand and made very little sense. For example, there is this one particular scene where at the King’s birthday party his wife and Queen of Vulgaria surprises him with a group of Mexican dancers in bright multicoloured costumes as the party entertainment. I found this very confusing and very hard to understand why they would put this type of scene in the show.
All the acting by the whole cast I found outstanding, but the two child actors who played Jeremy and Jemima Potts were incredible!! The actress who played Jemima, I read later in programme that this show was her first professional performance. I remember going home thinking: “how has this girl not been seen I picked up sooner!” The vocal performances of Jason and Michelle was exceptional especially Michelle’s performance. The lighting and sound throughout the show fitted every single scene and did not look wrong in anyway, shape or form.
Anyone who is looking or is thinking of going to see Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, I would highly recommend it, you will certainly get your tickets worth out of it.
Coming from a more Visually Impaired angle, the staff were really help in find me to my seat, they make sure I did have to climb so many stairs, they came to me during the interval and asked if I needed any help, support or if I needed anything. But even better, I got to meet some members of the cast at the end of the show at the stage door. They were all very friendly and took there time with me and didn’t rush me. They made me feel that they wanted me there and I did not rush of and told me that they need to go. They signed my programme and took photos with, and generally made me feel liked a VIP! Would recommend the theatre and looking forward to see future productions there.
Please feel free to leave comments on what you thought of this first post. I would be interested to read the feedback everyone has. Until next time!