Saturday Night Fever at the Alhambra Theatre Bradford Review


SaturdayNightFeverSaturday Night Fever
Alhambra Theatre, Bradford

10-14 March 2015

Reviewed by Sarah Woodhead

The year is 1976 and in Brooklyn, New York City, Tony Manero is 19 working a dead end job and living the turbulent life at home living in the shadows of the Brooklyn Bridge. But when the night falls Tony and his pals emerge from the Shadows and come alive at the Odyssey Club. This is where Tony comes to life the place where he can showcase his extraordinary ability to dance. His one ambition in life – to become the disco King, Tony is on the journey to find his Queen of the dance with all the ladies throwing themselves his way can he see past the distraction and get Stephanie she’s the one who has caught his eye, can she help make his dreams a reality.

A story based loosely around the 1977 film Saturday Night Fever where John Travolta was sweeping the ladies off their feet. I find it highly frustrating that people compare a film to a theatre production or a book to a film but the ladies sat in front of me repeatedly did that; this wasn’t in the film, the film was like this, it ended like that etc…

I enjoyed the show and the cast were talented the made the mixture of singing dancing and playing instruments appear effortless and worked well together, the choreography was as slick as the set changes. With a legendary soundtrack the songs told the story really well, even the ones that were added in for the theatre productions but not in the movie, Immortality (written by Bee Gees for Celine Dion) and What Kind of Fool (written by Barry Gibb for Barbara Streisand).

Danny Bayne (Tony Manero) is well cast with a lovely clear voice slick dance moves and the arrogant swagger yet vulnerability of Tony was well played.

Naomi Slights (Stephanie Mangano) with her equally incredible and flexible dance moves and stunning vocals as a perfectly matched leading lady. She blew me away with her rendition of “What Kind of Fool” and accompanied Danny’s vocals and they ended it perfectly with a duet for “How Deep is Your Love.”

It wasn’t the get up out your seat and sing along stuff I was half expecting, that is until the encore. I found myself listening to the story via lyrics over singing along for some reason. I was surprised by how much foul and sexual language was used, it was all as fitting as were the cast’s American accents and I truly enjoyed the performance.

CiCi Howells as the club singer was a standout cast member with her amazing musical talent and cracking singing she merged the songs and scenes together and brought the disco alive.

Another powerful performance with a touching and emotive rendition of Tragedy was Bobby C (Alex Lodge) He played the hopeless teen plagues by his girlfriend pregnancy and the pressure he was feeling spot on.

The set was brilliant and the changes were fitting and smooth the costumes were colourful. There was a huge range of talent from the 20 strong cast with the mixture of jazzy instruments, dancing and singing. Occasionally the odd trumpet initially drowned out the vocals but this was rectified and fast.

I took my dad to the show unbelievably he has never seen the movie. He would have been around the age of the characters at the time it was released.

He was blown away by the performance and said it enjoyable with a gritty believable storyline but felt at times it was rushed and characters were not really developed like Annette for example. If you got too carried away focusing on CiCi and her vocals you could lose track of the story.

Having been to the Alhambra a few times before it’s a lovely theatre a grand building I still manage to get lost each time I visit.

If you get a chance to see it you won’t be disappointed get on those boogie shoes and head to the Alhambra this week.

Rating: 4/5

Tickets cost from £21 to £28.50 (plus £1.50 booking fee).

Saturday Night Fever is at the Alhambra Theatre in Bradford until 14 March 2015. For more information or to book tickets click here or call the box office on01274 432000.

The Alhambra Theatre, Morley Street, Bradford, BD7 1AJ | Box Office 01274 432000

4 Star

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