Grease, Theatre Royal, until Saturday
All-time favourite musical Grease is being brought to life in a fun production by Newcastle upon Tyne Musical Theatre Company.
Grease is the company’s 66th production and it doesn’t disappoint. Set in 1959 at Rydell High School, the musical follows two groups of teenagers, known collectively as the T-Birds and Pink Ladies, as they tackle issues of love, friendship and rebellion.
While the dialogue between songs at times lacked a professional edge, the impressive stage sets, slick choreography and high calibre of performance during the musical numbers more than made up for this.
The classic hits proved popular with an appreciative audience on opening night and the all-singing, all-dancing show had the (predominantly female) packed-out crowd clapping and singing along to the well-known musical numbers.
Joshua Bamling gave a stand-out performance as protagonist Danny, his John Travolta-esque dance moves complemented by his excellent vocal skills, while Danny’s love interest Sandy, played by Lauren Gordon, pulled off her character’s transformation from a goody-goody to a greaser’s dream for the musical’s final scenes.
Also worth a mention is Pink Ladies leader Rizzo, played by Capital North East breakfast presenter JoJo Hatfield.
Winning over the audience with her sarcastic quips, strong singing style and slightly risqué acting, JoJo gave exceptionally good solo renditions of Look at Me, I’m Sandra Dee and There are Worse Things I Could Do.
The orchestra deserves credit for providing the production with a fantastically performed live soundtrack, with personal highlights including Summer Nights, Greased Lightning and a full company rendition of We Go Together.
As the production grew to a close, the feelgood factor of the musical left fans on a high and many seemed reluctant to leave.
Buy your tickets now – you won’t be disappointed.