Director: Ed Curtis
Musical Supervisor/Director/Orchestrations: Kenny Aitchinson
Choreographer: Nick Winston
Reviewer: Maureen Hylands
From the moment the curtain rose, the air is filled with magic, a magic that happily stays with us until the final curtain call.
Elaine C Smith as the much beloved Susan Boyle is superb, Smith packs every ounce of meaning possible in her rendition of every one of her songs. Her superb voice, combined with her unbeatable acting talents and striking similarity to Susan’s looks, gives us a performance that is sheer joy. Her interpretation of Susan’s persona, the cheeky wriggle, the one-armed hand on hip pose – typical Susan quirks – contrast so poignantly with later scenes depicting heartfelt misery at being bullied in the schoolroom. Her doubts, her fears, her joy, her unforced humour and cheeky twinkle coming across with impeccable finesse. A triumph.
Jame Paterson as Mr Boyle has a remarkably rich warm voice, deep and resonant, never shown better than when he sung Scarlet Ribbons -a delight to hear.Karen Mann as Mrs Boyle is particularly moving in the family church scene, her voice clear and strong, her diction at all times perfect.
Both these artistes are a perfect combination, not only in their duets, but also their heartfelt portrayal of love and concern for their daughter.
Ben Cracknell’s mind-blowing lighting and Morgan Large’s set also impress. It will undoubtedly be a very long time before we see a combination, so imaginative, skilful and adept at moving the story along such as this.The entire backdrop consists of a mass of TV sets. You want a church? A line of light snakes up, drawing a path to church as a child would use etch-a-sketch. A house miraculously appears, it’s interior seeming to draw itself into glowing colour. An intricate interior design of church again.Britain’s Got Talent shots of judges and contestants in non-stop configuration. Everything the show needed to tell the story in lighting and vision. Very clever indeed.
Then, of course, just when you think the show is over, we get the icing on the cake. The jewel in the crown shining as never before, that unexpected fiver found in the pocket, Susan herself.
Beautiful, assured, witty and natural. Her heart-warming charm pours over the footlights to enchant.The audience goes wild, then silence as no one moves a muscle as she starts singing I Dreamed a Dream.
Susan, there is another song that fits you perfectly. It’s called, Stay as Sweet as You Are. And millions are sure that you will. A terrific show in all aspects. Go and enjoy every second!