Hairspray is back and touring around the UK. Tackling some serious issues, sporting some rather big hair and displaying some fun loving dance moves, Hairspray is as vibrant as ever.
Having not being able to see the production when it was at the Leicester Curve back in 2014, I was intrigued to see the adaption on its new UK tour. With big songs that make you want to get up and join the party to important messages about race, bullying and equality.
With this touring cast, the talent from the fantastic leads and equally incredible ensemble putting in their absolute all into the performance although the show did feel like it was missing a bit of it’s original sparkle.
Leading lady Freya Edwards put on a stellar performance as ambitious teen Tracey Turnblad with pitch perfect vocals and a groove of her own. She was literally dancing to her own beat with a huge smile on her face the whole time.
Drew McOnie did a fantastic job at choreographing Hairspray for the tour and hits the nail on the head with sixties dance moves and pushing the cast to their full potential. His clever work allows the show to remain its high energy and get in the groove of the swinging vibes of Baltimore.
Brenda Edwards also gave a show stopping performance as Motormouth Maybelle and despite currently being under treatment for breast cancer, she give it her all which can only inspire us all. Her soulful voice and sassy style allowed her to shine bright and make a great addition to this strong cast.
Claire Sweeney as Velma Von Tussle also succeeded in bringing the house down with endless laughter and joy. Making her way onto the floor and into the lap of one audience member which was certainly a first but very entertaining to say the least.
It’s a shame that the show was slightly let down by the set design. It was very basic and one part caused a gigantic bang every time it was lowered onto the stage, which was a bit distracting. What I did like was the fact that the Orchestra was featured on stage for the duration of the show. That factor is becoming a more common thing and it’s nice to see the band shine as much as the cast.
Overall it was a fun evening and was great to finally get to see this production on stage. After it’s run at the Bromley Churchill the tour takes a shore break at the end of the month returning in 2017 with new tour dates. Hopefully the time off will allow this show to re-group and come back with a bang dazzling the rest of the company.
As the saying goes, you can’t stop the beat and Hairspray on tour is certainly doing the opposite of that.
More details of the tour can be found here www.hairsprayuktour.com