21-25 April 2015
Reviewed by Ann Durrell
Starring Strictly Come Dancing’s Vincent Simone and Flavia Cacace, Dance ‘Til Dawn is somewhere between a musical and a dance show. The audience are transported to 1940’s Hollywood to the office of Tommy Dubrowski (Teddy Kempner), a Private Eye who narrates the story for us. Tommy has photos of gangsters’ moll, Lana Clemanza (Abbie Osmon) in a compromising position with a movie star who meets an untimely end. Young movie star Tony DeLuca (Vincent Simone) is being set up for the murder and his new love Sadie Strauss (Flavia Cacace) is determined to clear his name.
The plot is weak but it does deliver an amusing amount of slapstick comedy whilst not taking itself too seriously. The whole show is narrated by Tommy who delivers his lines with pure comedic value and sets up situations for the other characters. The villainess, Lana (Abbie Osman) sashays around the stage challenging her inner Jessica Rabbit, using her feminine wiles to get her own way. Osman has huge stage presence and energy along with a strong voice, she really belts out her numbers.
The soundtrack is provided by a live band with songs from the era through to the present day. Oliver Darcy as ‘The Voice’ provides the vocals throughout, he has a fabulous range and a beautiful voice. The main characters are supported by a chorus line of singers/dancers. I felt the male dancers gave a stand out performance especially whilst as Lana’s henchmen. They delivered some impressive footwork whilst providing the audience with some real laughs.
The show is not really about the plot, it is about showing off some fantastic dancing, which at the end of the day is what the audience has come to see. Karen Bruce, who has worked on the Strictly tours is co-choreographer along with Simone and Cacace and it really is fabulous. We are treated to a selection of numbers, Charleston, Quickstep, Jive and as Champions of the Dance, they could not leave out the Argentine Tango. The fight scene where we see Simone swinging Cacace to knock out Lana’s henchmen and the pair leaping over bodies was superb. Another highlight was the prison scene where are heroes perform a beautiful and emotional dance.
There was a little bit of a late start and it felt it was a little shaky but it picked up after the first couple of scenes. I did enjoy it however I just felt there was something missing, that it did not quite know what it was trying to be, saying that it was very entertaining and part of the audience even gave a standing ovation at the end.
Tickets cost from £27 to £40 (includes £2 booking fee).
Dance ‘Til Dawn is at The Lowry in Manchester until 25 April 2015. For more information or to book tickets click here or call the box office on 0843 208 6000.
The Lowry, Pier 8, Salford Quays, Manchester, M50 3AZ | 0843 208 6000