Hairspray ~ 24/04/2008
by Bethany Coomber, aged 14

Devotion, dedication or just plain insanity? All huddled under our umbrellas waiting for Michael in the rain.

Rain that very quickly turned to hail, which died down soon afterwards. A few minutes later Michael pulled up, got out of the car and proclaimed “God, it's pouring!” That's our Michael, I suppose…

We were waiting by the stage door, everyone hoping for a quick glimpse of Michael. As always, he didn't disappoint! He was very cheerful and found time to talk to everyone waiting there, which proved to me that he's just as lovely off-stage as he is on-stage!

But, enough of all that. The Shaftesbury was, as always, a truly spellbinding sight. With intricate decoration running up and down all of the walls, soft, crimson light engulfing the whole theatre and a single, magnificent chandelier with hundreds of threads of tiny crystals swaying lazily above everyone's heads.

There was, as always at the theatre, an excited buzz of conversation, which stopped almost as soon as it started. For a few moments, you could have heard a pin drop…

But a pin drop isn't what we got! The first thing we heard was an outburst from the saxophone, and the lovely Leanne Jones flew into one of Hairspray's trademark songs, Good Morning Baltimore!

The rest of the show was many things, a burst of colour! A breath of fresh air! And, in many places, absolutely hilarious! For good reason; the jokes were well executed, for instance, Edna (Michael, obviously) and Wilbur's (Ian Talbot) romantic clinch that seemed a little too much to handle towards the end of the song “(You're) Timeless to Me”

But, on a serious note, I feel the show highlighted a very important factor, racial discrimination in the 1960's. I was very pleased with the way they pulled it off, I found it very touching the way one girl managed to change such a great injustice, it just goes to show, you should always fight for what's right!

In conclusion, I thought the cast was truly outstanding; the songs were not only incredibly addictive, but also romantic, poignant and just plain toe-tapping! The storyline was just as refreshing as it was stirring and thoughtful, and the CLOTHES and the HAIR! Wow, we have some skilled people in this world!

I've not done this before, but I award this show a 5 Star Rating!

For goodness' sake…




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