24 February to 7 March 2015
Reviewed by Laura Bown
Based on the classic RKO Fred Astaire and Ginger Rodgers motion picture, Top Hat truly transported us to the glamourous world of the 1930’s elite.
Top Hat follows the story of Jerry Travers (Alan Burkitt), an American dancer who is swapping Broadway for the West End. He wakes a fellow hotel guest, Dale Tremont (Charlotte Gooch), with his late night tap dancing, and so the romance of the story is introduced. What follows is a case of mistaken identity but takes them from London to the glamour of Venice.
To start the show the orchestra treated us to an opening montage of songs of the era, which really put the audience in the mood. The show features music and lyrics from Irving Berlin, Puttin’ on the Ritz, Cheek to Cheek, Let’s face the music and dance, to name a few of the classic you will know.
The dancing was just superb, the quality of the performances from all were just amazing. It really does show that a lot of the cast were in the actual West End production, and not just brought in for the tour.
There is quite a comedic element to the show. There are a few almost slapstick routines. The main comedic character is the butler Bates (John Conroy). His many changes of costume, disguising himself from an Italian waiter to a duchess provide some really funny moments.
Set design and costume are key to setting the scene, and boy did they get it right. The flowing white, fluffy dress which Charlotte Gooch wears during the cheek to cheek routine is just amazing!
My only criticism of the show was that it did seem slightly long at 2 hours 40 including interval, I found that the story did not move at a very fast pace, however this just shows that this is more of a ‘classic’ musical.
If you are looking for a show which delivers pure entertainment, with toe tapping songs and escapism to an era gone by then this one is for you. Catch it at the Lyceum until 7th of March.
Tickets cost from £27 to £42 (plus £1.50 booking fee).
Top Hat is at the Lyceum Theatre in Sheffield until 7 March 2015. For more information or to book tickets click here or call the box office on 0114 249 6000.
Sheffield Theatres, 55 Norfolk Street, Sheffield, S1 1DA | Box Office 0114 249 6000