The Spa Theatre, Scarborough ****
The Spa Theatre boasts the longest running summer show in the UK and it’s not hard to understand why.
It’s over ten years since Tony Peers rebranded the archetypal end-of-the-pier seaside variety show and created a sophisticated stage show that wouldn’t be out of place in a number one theatre or top class cabaret venue.
For this year’s show Peers was adamant he wanted “singers who could dance, not just move” and he certainly got what he wanted. For this multi-talented cast of six are simply amazing performers. In two hours they sing and dance their way through 40 songs from musicals ranging from Miss Saigon, Thriller and The Bodyguard to Hello Dolly and Mamma Mia!.
Linda Newport’s production has energy, style, imaginative staging and sparkle. Newport leads this marathon along with Johnny Carr, Ellie Carroll, Naomi Fox, Stuart Metcalfe and Louise Willoughby. Versatile, accomplished and with an incredible ability to change their persona as often as they do their costumes, they all fit comfortably into a range of roles, particularly in the Miss Saigon interlude where the characterization, vocals and staging are outstanding and exceedingly emotional.
Beautifully costumed and with a strong musical accompaniment Thoroughly Modern Musicals is a family show with a wonderful feel good factor – the Mamma Mia! finale had me singing and dancing my way down the promenade.
• To October 4.