The Show Must Go On review: some of the audience were dancing in the aisles
- Credit: Performers International Productions
Helen McDermott starred in a medley that brings alive nearly a century of musicals in The Show Must Go On at Gorleston Pavilion Theatre on Sunday night.
Almost a hundred year's worth of musicals is an awful lot of material to fit into two hours. But somehow, the cast of Norwich based Performers International Productions make the task look easy.
McDermott acts as guide to what might otherwise have been a rapid-fire sequence of familiar tunes without much shape to it.
Starting with the impact of the film musical The Jazz Singer in 1927, she charts the rise of 'talkies' with teacherly precision - even peering over the top of her glasses to make her points.
But she was quickly back in her usual glitzy element with numbers such as There's No Business like Show Business. Twinkly stars cascaded behind her and the snappy dance routine brought out the best in the ensemble on stage.
The hits come thick and fast. Once I Had a Secret Love is followed by - 'S Wonderful, Feed the Birds and Let's Go Fly A Kite. Well-loved songs from a classic era of movies and all superbly sung. The cast has us all tapping, swaying and humming along.
As the evening got into full swing, we moved on to the great epic stories first made famous by Rogers and Hammerstein. The theme from Oklahoma! got a powerful performance and an extract from Leonard Bernstein's dramatic West Side Story closes the first half.
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Part Two got bang up to date with Disney's children's animations and a powerful rendition of Let it Go! from Frozen.
And the lightening trip through musical mayhem reached its climax with the Juke Box musical. Memorable numbers include the aptly named The Show Must Go On from Bohemian Rhapsody, and I'm Gonna Be from Sunshine on Leith (which had some of the audience dancing in the aisles).
It was an informative show, that will send you back to your box sets with a fresh eye. And never mind that, it's fun.