THE TOAST OF THE EAST COAST

Liz Coggins reviews THOROUGHLY MODERN MUSICALS at the Spa Theatre Scarborough

THE TOAST OF THE EAST COAST

The Spa Theatre boasts the longest running summer show in the UK and its not hard to understand why.

Its over ten years since Tony Peers rebranded the archetypal end-of-the-pier seaside variety show. Once the domain of red nosed comics, simpering sopranos and past their sell by date chorus girls, he replaced it with a sophisticated stage show that wouldn’t be out of place in a number one theatre or top class cabaret venue.

For this years show Peers was adamant when auditioning his cast “I wanted singers who could dance – not just move” and he certainly got what he wanted. For this multi-talented cast of six are simply amazing performers. In two hours they sing and dance their way through 40 songs from musicals ranging from Miss Saigon, Thriller and The Body Guard to Hello Dolly and Mamma Mia.

Linda Newport’s production has energy, style, imaginative staging and sparkle with a capital S. Newport herself leads this marathon along with Johnny Carr, Ellie Carroll, Naomi Fox, Stuart Metcalfe and Louise Willoughby. Versatile, accomplished and with an incredible ability to change their persona as often as they do their costumes, they all fit comfortably into a range of roles, particularly in the Miss Saigon interlude where the characterizations, vocals and staging are outstanding and exceedingly emotional.

Beautifully costumed and with a strong musical accompaniment Thoroughly Modern Musicals is a family show with a wonderful feel good factor – the Mamma Mia finale had me singing and dancing my way down the promenade.

Runs Till October 4th

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