It’s an amazing time for diversity of style in “musicals” on both sides of the pond. Hamilton’s hip-hop, street poetry, storytelling, David Yazbek’s middle-eastern infused charmer The Band’s Visit, Jeanine Tesori’s Fun Home (newly arrived at London’s Young Vic while her dazzlingly original Caroline Or Change plays at the Playhouse Theatre).
Revisiting 42nd Street at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane – and it still remains the finest spectacle of dance to be found in the West End.
The sound of tapping feet invokes a whole era of classic Broadway and Hollywood musicals and when the curtain rises on this tap-infused extravaganza it pauses 18 inches or so off the stage to afford us our first glimpse of the source of that pulsing, kinetic sound – 42nd Street.
It is always difficult to capture the magical nature of a popular West End show onto an album, but with this gorgeous soundtrack the cast and everybody involved with the creation of this album have succeeded beautifully.
Dan Burton who plays Sawyer’s love interest Billy Lawlor is another of Mear’s regular ingénues, last seen in the West End’s Gypsy. Arguably the best of his generation in musical theatre dance, Burton has a grace in his movement that has to be seen to be believed alongside perfectly pitched, mellifluous vocals. Other Brits in the cast include Alexander Hanson, Ria Jones and Jenny Dale.