Choreographer/Director: Brendan Cole
Musical Director: Barry Robinson
Reviewer: Sarah O’Toole
Bought to us by one of the longest serving members of BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing, Licensed to Thrill certainly lives up to its name. With Brendan Cole doing the choreography we expect no less than sexy provocative Salsa’s or a sophisticated English Waltz and he most certainly does not disappoint.
Opening the show to the sounds of ‘Cry Me A River’ and ‘Boogie Wonderland’, Aliona Virlani, Scott Cole, Crystal Main, Melanie Hooper and Patrick Helm sashay on to the stage with Brendan slinking up from back of the stage to rapturous applause, wolf whistles and very close to the knuckle remarks, to begin what is probably one of the most interesting insights into the world of Ballroom and Latin American dances to date.
Brendan is not a selfish choreographer he allows his dancers time to perform on their own and we see Scott perform with Crystal and Patrick with Melanie. The music for the dances is as important as the dance itself and using this to help tell a story really helps the audience to get a feeling for the whole event, music such as ‘The Pink Panther theme’ for a Tango and ‘With you I’m born again’ for the English Waltz the storytelling really comes alive. There are many great dances in the show and one very iconic dance is performed near the end and is executed with all the skills and passion one anticipates from this wonderful love story.
At the question and answer session after the break we really see Brendan’s cheeky side radiate across the auditorium. Brendan comes down into the audioence to give a cheeky 29 year old blonde a kiss and also to dance a Rumba step with another lady. This is in response to the questions audience members sent in during the interval, poor bloke had his backside pinched his pecks squeezed and his buttocks stroked not that he complained much!!!
There is a tremendous part where the girls and the boys do a nightly dance off needless to say the results are sizzling hot and the outcome – well that’s a secret just for us in attendance.
The singers Iain MacKenzie and Julie Maquire do a sensational job, their voices are astounding. Barry Robinson and the Band play superbly and the whole show works so well you cannot help but be blown away. Not to mention how wonderful the costumes compliment the show.
This is definitely a night of pure entertainment with near the knuckle jokes, fantastic dancing and of course Mr. Snake Hips himself Brendan Cole. What’s not to enjoy?