Do you like Whitney Houston’s songs? Do you like suspense and high drama? Do you like ripped dancing guys in very little clothing? If your answer is yes to any of those questions then this may well be the show for you.
The show starts with a bang and is then a rollercoaster of emotions from there using almost every stage effect you can imagine. It overloads your senses from start to finish. The set design is detailed and clever and changed seamlessly by the well drilled stage crew.
The story follows global megastar Rachel Marron’s story as she gets some unwanted attention from a stalker who believes they should be together. Rachel’s team bring in Frank Farmer to be her bodyguard and, without spoiling it, everything kicks off. It has some differences to the film but the premise is apparently the same.
In the production I saw Alexandra Burke, previous winner of the X Factor, played the lead role with Stuart Reid playing opposite her as Frank. As usual with “celebrity” performances I went in with fairly low expectations however I was more than pleasantly surprised. Burke’s acting portrayed scared and vulnerable yet feisty simultaneously and her voice in those big Whitney classics was incredible from the raspy lower tones through to the big, belty showstoppers. Reid’s performance contrasted this immensely with fewer emotional changes which worked well to show the professionalism of the character.
The knock out performance though was Rachel John as the sister, Nicki Marron. Her rendition of “Saving all my love for you” was pitch perfect with a sublime tone to it. Every time she sang she was a joy to listen to.
The chorus, although not on stage much, were used well when they did have something to do with tightly drilled, high tempo choreography. Some of the lifts were incredible. I found myself wishing they were on stage more, their energy radiated through the auditorium, it was infectious and by the end everyone was on their feet dancing and singing along.
Juke box musicals are often looked down upon but the light and shade of the story and quality of the songs mean this is a great evening out. The tour I saw is towards the end of its run however it is transferring with some of the touring cast (not Alexandra Burke) onto the West End so there is still plenty of opportunity to see this powerful piece of theatre. Visit the website here for more info.
Have you seen The Bodyguard? What did you think?