I always enjoy my visits to Square Drama, they are very welcoming, and you can see the cast have put a lot of effort and hard work in. This was no exception – although a musical show is always
a little harder for Square Drama as they are not primarily a singing society.
The opening was lively, and I enjoyed the choice of music overall.
I liked the use of a set colour scheme for the costumes, which worked really well, and all tied together with the red carnations – everyone looked very smart and co-ordinated, which created a good
look to the production.
It was nice to have the two youngsters in the show, and for them to have solo numbers. Rose Taplin needed a little more confidence but this will come with experience. Keiran Pritchard was full of
enthusiasm, and interacted well with the cast and audience. Very well done to you both.
For me, Tammy Calvert and Sabina Jackson were the undoubted stars of the show – both have powerful and tuneful voices, which they used to great effect, and also injected lots of expression and
contrasts into their numbers, which I felt was lacking in some of the other numbers, maybe the result perhaps of the singer not feeling entirely comfortable with what they were singing.
I felt that, as is always the case with this type of show, there were a certain amount of song choices which were not always suitable. The production team needs to bear in mind that certain
numbers are particularly difficult to sing, with very diverse ranges.
I don’t think any personal mics were used, which was excellent, as projection from everyone was very good, and I was able to hear every word clearly – which is why I always like to sit at the back of
The movement employed over the production was quite imaginative, and allowed the cast to move around the stage well, whilst keeping in touch with each other where needed. The ensemble numbers
provided some good harmonies and lively movement.
Because so many numbers were used it is impossible for me to comment on every one – but I thought the opening of Act 1 was very energetic, and Act 2 opening was very rousing with lots of
enthusiasm. I liked the finale too, nicely done. The close of Act 1 was good.
There were a couple of things that might have helped with the look and feel of the production – in Laura French and Marina French’s number, I would have liked them to be closer together – so that we
could have got more reaction between them, but it was nicely sung by them both.
Mike Ramsdale’s first number was too long – I know it is often difficult to cut certain songs, but I felt the audience attention started straying, the following number was short and snappy, with Ivor
Mitchelmore and Tammy adding some liveliness.
There were some good comedic interludes, I liked Stephen Parry and Chris Fletcher’s contribution in this area. Another young lady who made her mark was Hannah Mitchelmore, she has a charming
look and voice, and her solo really suited her.
I needed Stephen Turner to provide more guidance from the keyboard to the singers, as I thought some of the cast struggled a bit with the more difficult areas.
There were some nice moments, and on the whole I enjoyed the production. I think that overall with a couple of exceptions I just needed a little more conviction from the cast – confidence is
key, even if you don’t feel it, you need to convey it to your audience, don’t be afraid to really go for it!!
Reviewed by Nova Horley - June 2014