Monday, 25 April 2016

"The Rocky Horror Picture Show"
Nottingham Theatre Royal.

The iconic Richard O Brien penned musical returns to the Nottingham stage with a new cast which when I heard of the cast list, I'll admit I was a little dubious, having previously enjoyed the incredible David Bedella as Frank n Furter. How could his successor fill those heels and that corset and be as deliciously sinful, as well as funny?

Well Liam Tamne, who we know from his brilliant version of "This Woman's Work" on The Voice UK, actually did a very credible job as Frank. He managed to look and sound the part and by the end of the show all of my doubts about him filling the role were dispelled. he strutted and flounced in those heels and his voice was dripping with lust and at times really tender.

Brad and Janet, the naive and virginal pair who just happened to break down near Frank n Furter's place were played by Ben Kerr, standing in for Ben Freeman, and The X Factor's Diana Vickers. What a delightfully good looking pair and both actors possessing great voices for the roles, While I was looking forward to seeing Mr Freeman take on Brad, Ben Kerr was just marvellous in this role. I'd be happy to pay to see Ben Kerr as Brad, as opposed to him being billed as the Understudy to Ben Freeman. I was very impressed with both Ben and Diana.

Kristian Lavercombe was everything you could ask for from Riff Raff, but as Kristian has played this role almost a thousand times, you understand why he looks so at home in the role. I love Richard O Brien as Riff Raff but Kristian is as close to the main man himself as you're going to get. A brilliant fun role which he just nails.

Rocky, the "creature" Frank n Furter creates to relieve his tension has changed a bit since the original film. No longer blond and no longer with gold pants, but still rippling with muscles and good looking, Dominic Anderson takes on the role with leopard skin pants replacing the original gold ones. He smoulders through the role and is great eye candy for the show.

Eddie, the biker played by Meatloaf in the film, seems to be just an added on role which has been kept in from the film but seems to have no real relevance to the plot in the way he did in the film. Paul Cattermole, who you may remember from S Club 7, but may not now recognise, plays Eddie with his one song, which again, for me seemed to lack relevance in 2016.

I loved Sophie Linder-Lee as Columbia and Kay Murphy as Magenta. Both very sexy and great fun to watch.

Richard Meek played the wheelchair bound Dr Scott and Steve Punt, from Punt and Dennis fame was the narrator. the narration ever so slightly updated in parts from the last time I saw the show.

A brilliant live band was crisp and powerful and you felt the power of the band hit you in the chest but all the while not drowning the singers, Under the musical direction of Ben Van Tienan this band rocked!

Directed by Christopher Luscombe, an absolute legend of the musical theatre world, he has kept this show fresh and still an absolute blast to watch.

You'll love the set which has a real space age feel about it while combining it with the typical haunted mansion creepiness.

The lighting of the show also had a space age, futuristic feel which worked really well and was designed by Nick Richings.

As you'd expect the costumes for everyone were fantastic, as were the wigs.

Still one of the best fun musicals to see although I felt there was a reduction in the audience participation stakes this time round, although the whole audience got up for "The Timewarp", if not the first time, the second time round. I also thought that there weren't as many people dressed as characters in the audience. Maybe the weather put them off a bit.

"The Rocky Horror Picture Show" is at the Nottingham Theatre Royal until Saturday 30 April 2016. a show that can't be toucha toucha toucha'd for sheer entertainment value and sauciness.

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