Personal: US & UK 2015

Backstage at  Something Rotten! Best part of the show :)
Backstage at Something Rotten! Best part of the show :)

As part of my ambition to create world-class shows and entertainment, I try my best to get to the epicentres of global entertainment at least once a year. This year left me inspired and exhilarated with exceptional Broadway, Las Vegas and West End shows. SO much amazing!!

Broadway

  • The cast of Sideshow @ 54Below: arriving at the theatre with luggage and sans shower is not the best way to start my New York adventure, but all was forgotten with delicious food, company and performances – I mean seriously, the talent was incredible, up-close and personal. I mean Henry Krieger (composer of Dreamgirls was 2 metres away accompanying and singing!!) … a once-in-a-lifetime event.
  • Something Rotten: MMmm … great performances but I thought it was typically unexciting American musical comedy – broad, basic and predictable. Highlight was the incredible opportunity to go backstage (tiny! super organised!), meet cast and hobnob (from a distance … ok … without them knowing … Sean Hayes ahem) with celebs …
  • Finding Neverland: Horrendous book and some incredibly forced and broad performances … but I fell in love with the stylised Mia Michaels choreography and spectacularly well-staged moments.
  • Fun Home: Exceptional on every level … so beautiful and simple and perfect.
  • Phantom of the Opera: Just because :)
  • Hedwig and the Angry Inch: Loved the conceptual set design – a car crash in slow motion intimating the action on stage … a bravura performance by Darren Criss.
  • American in Paris: Terrible seats leading to a very limited view of the stage … so much deck unf :( Pretty and sounded good …
  • The Visit: Too magical seeing Chita Rivera in an exceptional performance in the final Kander & Ebb show … loved the staging and dramatic unit set …

En route to Vegas we visited Disneyland and attended the famed Magic Castle along with the Academy Magical Arts Awards Ceremony …

I mean seriously ... Bette!
Seriously … Bette!

Las Vegas

  • Cirque’s Michael Jackson One: Onslaught of incredible technology, design, energy, stimuli, talent. I thought perhaps too overwhelming as individuals were lost in the barrage … but WOW incredible nonetheless.
  • Illusions with Jan Rouven: Everything that is worng with modern day illusion shows … no redeeming factor in my eyes unfortunately.
  • Jeff Civillico: Fantastic performer … you can see the traits of a working, pro … adjusting and tailoring his performance for the audience … using simplest props along with talent and experience for an entertaining afternoon performance.
  • David Copperfield: the best I’ve seen of him since his 1999 tour in South Africa, some great new content … pretty much back to form.
  • Jabbawockeez: Disappointingly tired … high school concert not much more.
  • Bette Midler – Divine Intervention Tour: I loved every moment! Real bawdy broad with talent oozing … hilarious stand-up comedy and soaring belting voice … so many highlights (I thought her dancers were more successful in boiled egg costumes – talking to you Something Rotten!) … a little tacky, a whole lot bizarre, so good!!

West End

  • Peter Pan in Kensington Park: I love Peter Pan … this physical interpretation in the enchanting outdoor location was exceptional from start to finish. I loved it.
  • Miss Saigon: I’d never seen a production of this famous show … I was pleasantly surprised … great lead performances, thoughtful staging and a bog ol dose of spectacle.
  • Gypsy: This was a massive highlight for me. A star turn from Imelda Staunton in a compact and incisive production.
  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: Missing a whole lot of magic, this production is a whistle-stop tour that leaves us wanting a whole lot more (not in a good way) … the backstage tour was interesting though!

I mean does it get any better?? Bliss!

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