Touring – reviewed at the Orchard Theatre, Dartford
Guest reviewer: Sarah Gaimster
This musical differs to what we’ve come to expect; it’s not “Dusty Springfield – The Musical” but a story written by Warner Brown featuring Springfield’s catalogue of 60s hits.
As the story opens we meet the three lead characters: Kat (Alice Barlow) who has recently lost her Gran, Paul (Michael Howe) who has never stopped loving the man he fell in love with as a teen, and finally widowed Alison (Michelle Gayle), a teacher troubled by inappropriate feelings for her student. The lovelorn trio decides the answers to all their problems can be found by visiting The Preacher, a London record store famed for the advice given by its owner.
When they reach the store they find that it is now being run by the son of the former Preacher Man as a coffee shop, aided by the peculiar Cappuccino Sisters. Convinced that the Son of the Preacher Man can live up to his Dad’s reputation, they enlist his help to solve their problems.
Unfortunately, this show needs a bit of polishing as its storytelling is laboured and the atmosphere is lacklustre, not the vibrant lively scene expected. Springfield’s music sounds dull and dreary. Craig Revel Horwood’s choreography is a “disaster, darling”; its delivery is clunky and the on-stage instruments sounded out of tune.
I had been really looking forward to this show, and take regular trips to the theatre. Unfortunately, this did not live up to my expectations.