Review: Katherine Jenkins *****

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York Barbican

ALREADY a nation’s sweetheart, Katherine Jenkins doesn’t need to do much to further endear herself to the masses.

So, when the Welsh opera star opened her penultimate show of a 27-date tour, by touching on her much-publicised break up from fiancée Gethin Jones, it merely strengthened the audience’s grip. What followed in a eclectic show proved yet again that the 31-year-old is a truly world-class performer regardless of sympathy votes.

Completely magnetising, as Jenkins gracefully eased from one side of the stage to the other, it was like her entranced audience was watching a tennis game in slow-motion.

Displaying her vast range, from performing a seductive Bolero and enchanting Somewhere Over A Rainbow to the ubiquitous I Dreamed A Dream but in its native French tongue, she illustrated why she has earned global fame.

Jenkins’ more traditional fans may not like her shift from her opera to dabble in the mainstream but there’s no doubting her panache. Anthony Inglis’s brilliant orchestra gave her set the majesty it deserved and there was also a series of duets with upcoming tenor Nathan Pacheco.

Jenkins- all glittering gowns and looking not too dissimilar to Marilyn Monroe - invited questions too with one admirer causing much hilarity by offering her a date at Greggs and so wondering what was her favourites pasty?

She certainly will not be short of offers following Jones’ exit while her own came with her splendid signature tune Time To Say Goodbye.