This touring production of Mike Leigh’s Abigail’s Party opts for comedy rather than tragicomedy at the Opera House Manchester, losing a little depth in order to find more laughs.
This role was famously played by the inimitable Alison Steadman in the original, and whilst these are gold heels which are impossible to fill, Jodie Prenger is excellent as Beverly.
Mike Leigh’s classic Abigail’s Party is back in the theatre with its irrepressible hostess, Beverly Moss, handing out gin and tonics and cheesy-pineapple nibbles to the sounds of Demis Roussos.
Intense and painfully funny, Mike Leigh’s classic comedy is given a new lease of life in this engaging and lively production directed by Sarah Esdaile that keeps the audience thoroughly engaged and entertained from start to finish.
I am old enough to have seen the original televised play for today of Mike Leigh’s Abigail’s Party in 1977 and have loved it ever since. Therefore, I was really looking forward to seeing Sarah Esdaile’s adaptation of this iconic piece and I wasn’t disappointed.
The National Theatre has announced a UK tour of Bijan Sheibani’s production of A Taste of Honey, Shelagh Delaney’s taboo-breaking 1950s play which was first produced in the Lyttelton Theatre in 2014. Designed by Hildegard Bechtler, the piece has been reconceived in an exciting new production, featuring a live onstage band, and will star Jodie Prenger as Helen. Further casting is to be announced.
As part of this year’s open-air concert line-up Live At Chelsea, some of the biggest names in musical theatre were joined by the Royal Symphonic Concert Orchestra to celebrate the 70th Birthday of Andrew Lloyd Webber, one of the most influential musical theatre composers of all time.
Fat Friends The Musical might not be the kind of show you see over and over again, but if you’re looking for a fun, feel-good night out then you can’t go too far wrong with what is an enjoyable production.
On paper, Fat Friends the Musical ticks all the boxes: a nostalgic revival of a much-loved TV series, written by the show’s original creator Kay Mellor; a heart-warming story about loving yourself and your body no matter what you weigh.
Fat Friends the Musical has got quick wit and northern humour, a cast who is as passionate about the production as the audience appears to be, and it’s got Kay’s Mellor’s life-affirming stamp on it, too. Uplifting, joyous and surely on target for a West End transfer.
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