Newspaper Reviews

2017 - Together Again Tour / Album

  • JustBall.Net Review - 30/10/17
    You can tell it’s been produced with love and dedication. The sound is utterly divine, an amazing orchestra, a wonderful big band, spot on choir and both Bs singing like a dream.
  • HMV - 27/10/17
    "If you're a fan of musicals and big, powerful voices then yes, absolutely."

2016 - Together Tour / Album

  • Official Charts - 16/12/16
    "It just goes to show that you never, ever know what is around the corner in this business. We didn’t expect this."
  • Forbes Magazine - 16/12/2016
    "..finally risen all the way to the top spot, which is unusual for a record that has been performing well all along..."
  • Inews - 12/12/2016
    Since its release last month, Together has become the only album to increase its volume of sales week after week.
  • MusicWeek - 06/12/16
    "When we signed the Ball and Boe project it was never just going to be about Christmas. It was always about the longer play.”
  • The Star - 06/12/16
    One word – enthralling.
  • ReviewsHub - 27/11/2016
    "This all could be rather sterile, but the obvious friendship between Ball and Boe and their good-natured, unforced banter with each other..."
  • RedBrick - 27/11/2016
    WSome things just seem made to go together. Fish and chips, for example, as well as wine and chocolate, and for many a UoB student, maybe even Fab and a Roosters (!). However, it seems one more thing can now be added to that list – Michael Ball and Alfie Boe W

2015 - Mack and Mabel - Chichester

  • The Telegraph - 22/07/2015 - 4 stars
    And, sure, with Michael Ball cutting a dash and making a splash as Mack, this production might just bring the show to the West End for the first time in almost 10 years
  • The Guardien - 27/07/2015 - 3 stars
    Michael Ball’s Mack is all grit, snarl and raw energy.
  • The Argus - 22/07/2015
    His grumpy movie mogul captures perfectly the driven man who could urge his actors and production teams on to churn out 15 films in three weeks to feed the insatiable cinema going public’s demand for new works.
  • Hastings Observer - 22/07/2015
    Ball himself, of course, reaches new heights in a show that cannot fail but take the West End by storm after its Chichester run.

2012 Sweeney Todd in London

  • Sunday Express - 25/03/2012 - 5 stars
    "The power and magnitude comes from Michael Ball’s utter immersion into the title role that renders him all but unrecognisable"
  • The Buciks Herald - 23/03/2012 - 5 stars
    "Ball ’s Todd is mesmerising. You keep staring at him wondering if it really is the star of Hairspray, Phantom and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. The transformation is remarkable and all credit to the actor’s versatility."
  • The Independent on Sunday - 25/03/2012
    "Ball is frighteningly morose, this typically chirpy performer transmogrified into a hulking psychopath, with a greasy forelock and ghoulishly pallid face."
  • Variety - 21/03/2012
    "Instead, Imelda Staunton's Mrs. Lovett, curling herself against him, breathes in the sexual heat pouring off him and, terrified and thrilled by his violence, whispers right into his ear in an attempt to bring him back down to practicalitie."
  • The Observer - 25/03/2012
    "What Michael Ball brings to Sweeney, aside from his tremendous voice, is a monumental, depressive stillness."
  • The Leisure Group - 23/03/2012
    Michael Ball playing the malevolent Mr Todd?” I hear you cry with scorn. Yes, and he’s quite literally bloody brilliant.
  • Maidenhead Advertiser - 23/03/2012
    His stage presence is mesmerising, with an almost Russell Crowe like gruffness.
  • Fourthwall Magaziine - 24/03/2012
    "Vocally, Ball is breathtaking, he moves seamlessly from rich baritone to lyric tenor with ease, creating moments of astonishing beauty, particularly in his haunting rendition of My Friends"
  • Financial Times - 21/03/2012 - 5 stars
    "The moment when he shifts from specific murderous intent towards the judge who wronged him and into a psychopathic loathing of mankind is, if you will pardon the pun, hair-raising"
  • Official London Theatre - 21/03/2012
    "we meet a still, brooding, snarling, giant of a psychotic man who would sit comfortably alongside other iconic figures of horror like Hannibal Lecter or The Texas Chainsaw Massacre’s Leatherface."
  • Evening Standard - 21/03/2012
    It’s a chilling performance, sinister and saturnine. Ball is usually associated with warmth and a dimpled, chummy charm.
  • The Stage - 21/03/2012
    "Yet it is more than an image change that makes the actor’s performance such a triumph, it is the physicality and passion he brings to the whole affair."
  • Time Out - 21/03/2012 - 5 stars
    "Ball's grim, vengeful anti-hero is mesmeric"
  • British Theatre Guide - 21/03/2012
    "...he combines passion, wickedness and black humour well"
  • The Times - 21/03/2012 - 5 stars
    "Ball is terrific. Unrecognisable with his beard and side-parted hair, he sings with the chilling purpose of a man desperate to turn himself into an angel of death. "
  • The Guardian - 21/03/2012 - 5 stars
    "...Instead of playing the end from the beginning, Ball charts every stage of Sweeney's descent. And I mean it as the highest compliment..."
  • The Telegraph - 21/03/2012 - 4 stars
    "...and the moment when he flips from a man with a legitimate grievance into a deranged psychopathic killer sends shivers racing down the spine."
  • Daily Mail - 21/03/2012 - 4 stars
    But my neighbour, in her late 40s, repeatedly hid behind her hands and children will be given nightmares.
  • Whats On Stage - 21/03/2012 - 4 stars
    "The performances of Michael Ball as the avenging demon barber and Imelda Staunton as a bustling, bravura, pie-eyed Mrs Lovett will remain definitive for a very long time. "
  • BBC Entertainment - 21/03/2012 - Review Roundup

2011 Sweeney Todd in Chichester

  • Chichester Observer - 16/10/2011
    Ball is a brooding, menacing presence, vicious in the extreme, but also powerfully poignant - the embodiment of evil, but an evil you can understand.
  • The Times - 08/10/2011
    "But if Staunton’s evolution is satisfying, Michael Ball is a revelation. We all know he is a safe pair of lungs, but his Sweeney is intense, pitiable, real. "
  • Daily Express - 09/10/2011
    "It was the triumphant pairing and performances of Michael Ball as the crazed Sweeney, and Imelda Staunton as the eccentric murderess Mrs Lovett. Together, they brought a new power to the show perfect for each other’s exceptional artistry."
  • Financial Times - 09/10/2011
    "he is a performer of both musical and theatrical skill and commitment."
  • The Guardian - 07/10/2011
    So Ball presents us with a potato-faced, dark-haired guy you could easily pass in a crowd and who only reveals his murderous fixation in private.
  • Daily Mail - 07/10/2011
    "he is the psycho next door, and a much-improved version of Norman Bates – taller, stronger and in control of his temper. "
  • The Stage - 07/10/2011
    "But Michael Ball is an unexpected revelation, not just because he is virtually unrecognisable - only his trademark dimples give him away - but because he dares to appear so relentlessly unsympathetic"

2011 National UK Tour (Heroes)

  • This is Bristol - 19/06/11
    This is an entertainer who has a real mutual love affair with his fans, and gives unstinting of his talent.
  • EADT - 16/06/11
    It's awkward for a thirty year old man to get goose bumps when listening to another man perform 'When Will I Hold You Again',but by the end of the evening I couldn't really hide them.

2011 Hairspray Tour

  • Somerset County Gazette - 18/04/11
    Now he is one of UK entertainment's top names and he's currently showing precisely why at the Bristol Hippodrome.
  • Bristol 24/7 - 13/04/11
    Michael Ball is fantastic as Tracy's mother Edna, and is in danger of overshadowing Micky Dolenz, who plays Tracy's father.
  • Gloucestershire Gazette - 13/04/11
    Not only was the West End hit musical Hairspray coming to Bristol as part of its first national tour, it was bringing with it Michael Ball, the leading man of musical theatre in the West End and Broadway ...
  • Bristol Evening Post - 13/04/11
    Ball clearly embraces the part, and his skill and comedic ability make Edna a huge hit with the audience.
  • Weston, Morle & Somerset Mercury - 13/04/11
    Perhaps the simplest scene of the lot in the second half, but definitely the most memorable, was when the pair sang their duet Timeless To Me, it was a classic and I felt tears of laughter rolling down my face.

2011 Heroes

  • Indie London - 11/03/2011
    Kudos, too, for a thrilling rendition of Joel’s New York State of Mind and the lively crowd-pleaser of an album finale that is Avenues And Alleyways. Ball’s popularity only looks set to soar.
  • This is Staffordshire - 11/03/2011
    Michael Ball remains as fresh as ever and has a huge and loyal fan base that will adore this easy listening album
  • - 11/03/2011
    "....he’s done them proud with arrangements that are classic and classy and heavy on strings and brass.."

2010 Hairspray Tour

  • The Scotsman - December 2010
    It's not easy holding your own against theatrical heavyweights such as Michael Ball and Micky Dolenz.
  • Edinburgh Guide - December 2010
    The most disturbing thing is as the song progresses, this most unlikely pair of schmaltzy lovers create a few magical moments of affection. (Michael and Micky Dolenz during Timeless to me)
  • The Public Reviews - 14/05/2010
    He is still vocally supreme but it is his comic sense and delivery that really blows the crowd away
  • Southern Daily Echo - 13/05/2010
    The utterly convincing Ball has unmistakable chemistry with Les Dennis as comical husband Wilbur,
  • The Portsmouth News - 13/05/2010
    Michael Ball surprised all in the West End by donning the show's most flamboyantly feminine outfits and he shows south coast audiences just why he won an Olivier in the role of Edna Turnblad.
  • Wales Online - 15/04/2010
    "The last few years have been the most successful and enjoyable of my whole life, personally and professionally," he said.
  • Wales Online - 09/04/2010
    "...he is totally convincing as the mother of Tracy Turnblad ..."

2009 UK Tour

2009 West Wycombe

2008 Summer Concerts

  • Liverpool Echo ~ 21/07/2008
    Over the years that voice has matured adding richer, deeper notes and with them a seemingly never-ending amount of clout.
  • The Stage ~ 21/07/2008
    This was a quite astonishing performance from a true master of his art and one can only hope that it isn't a further three years before he graces the stage in this way again.
  • What's On Stage ~ 21/0720/08
    An absolute quality performance from an absolute star and his companions.

2008 Hairspray

2007 Hairspray ~ Press Night

  • ~ 12/11/2007
    Musical theatre veteran Michael Ball also proves to be a stroke of casting genius
  • IHT - 6/11/2007
    The truth, of course, is that Ball was indeed there, giving his all in the guise of the Baltimore laundress and mother
  • Classical
    "Michael Ball really makes the most of his chances"
  • The Londonist ~ 05/11/2007
    " Michael Ball dons the rather large brassiere of Edna Turnblad and he is magnificent "
  • The Independent Online ~ 04/11/2007
    "Michael Ball is having a blast in the Dame role as Tracy's mum"
  • Theatrenews Online ~ 04/11/2007
    "Ball acts the role with real maternal solicitude and sweetness"
  • Times Online - 04/11/2007
    "We were actually singing the finale as we stepped out into the street: 'Cause you can't stop the motion of the ocean, or the rain from above . . .
  • Observer - 04/11/2007
    " his (Mel Smith) ''Timeless to Me' duo with Ball is one of the unexpected showstoppers; when they kiss, it's more kind than camp."
  • Western Mail 02/11/2007
    "It is easy to see why it won practically every award going in New York and justice will not be done unless London follows suit "
  • The Financial Times - 01/11/2007
    "I struggled hard to resist being washed away on the wave of feelgood this show generates but, in the end, washed away I was"
  • Variety - 02/11/2007
    but the most pleasant surprise is Michael Ball's Edna. Getting into a dress has clearly released Ball -- his usual over-bright stage persona has vanished.
  • The Herald ~ 01/11/2007
    "Michael Ball has the part of a lifetime. Obese and camp, Ball is the best pantomime dame London has seen in years. "
  • Bloomberg ~ 01/11/2007
    "Ball turns in a funny and touching performance, resisting the temptation to go over-the-top."
  • The Independent ~ 31/10/2007
    "...the fat-suited Ball, who is appreciably better than John Travolta in the recently released movie version of the show, gives one of the warmest, funniest and most oddly touching performances in a musical that I have ever seen."
  • The Times ~ 31/10/2007
    "But when Leanne Jones's Tracy is bounding about the stage exuding all-American resilience and optimism, well, she brought out the inner cheerleader I didn't know I had. "
  • Telegraph ~ 31/10/2007
    "There's even a delightful vaudevillian routine for Michael Ball, who plays Tracy's corpulent mum in spectacular big-bosomed drag and looks as if he's having the time of his life, and Mel Smith as her devoted, joke-shop-owning husband. "
  • The Evening Standard ~ 31/10/2007
    "Michael Ball deliciously fattened up and dragged down in bland frocks and lurid gowns, majestically slips into the role of the fat, foghorned laundress, "
  • The Stage ~ 31/10/2007
    "a man plays Tracy's mother Edna, a role it appears Michael Ball was born to play and he is obviously loving every minute. "
  • Daily Express ~ 31/10/2007
    "It is only when she discovers big-haired glamour that Ball turns on the floodlights, knocking everyone else off the stage. "
  • The Guardian ~ 31/10/2007
    "...and Michael Ball is very funny as her muscular moll of a mum who once entertained dreams of being a designer. "
  • London Theatre Guide ~ 31/10/2007
    "Ball seems in his element in a frock, gaining much comedy value from his ample bosoms and behind, while Smith plays Ball's straight man, milking the pair's duet Timeless To Me with undisguised pleasure. "

2007 ~ Hairspray

  • West End Whingers - 18/10/2007
    " Ball's casting was a bit of a surprise, but he proves himself to be a first rate Edna with great comic delivery and he really, really gets Edna (and loves her) "
  • Baz's Watch Out For: 18/10/2007
    ...but this London production is better than when I saw it three or more times on Broadway.

2007 ~ UK National Tour

2005 ~ Woman in White on Broadway

2005 ~ Patience

  • (17/09/05)
    " Ball is, in short, a splendid leading man, of the sort in very short supply these days (and it doesn't hurt that he's still youthfully handsome). "
  • Columbia Spectator (15/09/05)
    " Ball is best known for his powerhouse baritone belt (an untrained sound for an opera house, but one that is appealing nonetheless)"
  • North Jersey (15/09/05)
    " writer of verse so exalted and ethereal its preciousness is matched only by that of his personality."
  • New York Post (13/09/05)
    " delivers a hilarious term as the poet modelled to some degree after Oscar Wilde."
  • (13/09/05)
    " He is the brilliant centerpiece of Tazewell Thompson's fine production"
  • New York Times (12/09/05)
    "We keep thinking, "Too much, too much," and then Mr. Ball and Mr. Burdette appear and charm the pants off us."
  • Newsday (14/09/05)
    " the insufferable Bunthorne benefited not only from his good looks and easy, charming voice, but from the canny stage instincts of a genuine West End star."
  • The Star Ledger (12/09/05)
    So Ball's appearance as the "ultra-poetical, super-aesthetical" Bunthorne is something of a sneak preview of his comical gifts.
  • New York Sun (12/09/05)
    "The costumes of Merrily Murray-Walsh were interesting and appropriately colorful and Mr. Ball used his fur-collared cape to great effect. "

2005 ~ UK Tour

2005 ~ Woman in White

  • The Stage
    "...gloriously completes his journey from juve and romantic lead to ornate, hilarious character actor here..."

2004 ~ Singular Sensations

  • Financial Times
    "... Michael Ball may still not be my particular cup of tea but I realise that I had underestimated him."
  • Times (29/98/04)
    "Ball manages to eclipse Edith Piaf on the insistent, foot-stamping refrain of Padam and turns There's No Business like Show Business into something approaching a reverie "

2004 ~ Salt Lake City

2004 ~ Australian Tour

2002 ~ Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

  • The Daily Mirror ~ A bitty Chitty Chitty magic for Charlotte
  • This is London ~ comes the day after the musical's hugely successful world premiere
  • Guardian ~ half an hour after the scheduled curtain up the cast and capacity audience were sent home.

2002 ~ Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Premiere Night

  • The Mirror ~ Michael Ball is the large cast's only genuinely impressive singer
  • The Times ~ The show is cast to the hilt, with Michael Ball as an attractive, open-faced Caractacus Potts...
  • Theatre Now ~ The curtain call itself had been one of the longest and liveliest in recent memory
  • Sunday Times ~ with Michael Ball as an attractive, open-faced Caractacus Potts
  • Rainbow Net ~ plenty of charm and a relaxed stage presence
  • Times India ~ Chitty , the ridiculously lovable car with wings
  • Guardian 2 ~ this Chitty Chitty Bang Bang is in almost every respect superior to the original
  • Guardian ~ Last night was a full glamour frocks and rocks first night such as the RSC has not seen for some time
  • Financial Times ~ I am bewildered by how much I love the new stage version of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
  • Evening Standard ~ Michael Ball's powerfully sung, soulful Caractacus
  • Ananova ~ "We still adore it today," he said
  • BBC ~ Mr Ball sings Hushabye Mountain, the best ballad, with real charm and relish
  • BBC 2 ~ Michael Ball is a likeable Caractacus Potts
  • BBC 3 ~ Emma Watson: "There was lots of magic. It was very cool."
  • What's on Stage ~ top-notch cast including Ball
  • Sheridan Morley ~ be careful, very harsh review!

2002 ~ Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Pre-Show Reports

  • Evening Standard ~ "Another challenge is that I have to dance - I've never danced on stage before.' And how's it been? 'I've never known pain like it,' he sighs."
  • BBC ~ Producers say audiences are in line for a treat
  • BBC ~ about the Dog-Casting
  • Virgin ~ Richard O'Brien Interview
  • The Independent ~ Richard O'Brien Interview
  • This is London ~ Interview with Emma Williams

2002 ~ Charity Gala Premiere

  • BBC website ~ invited guests were Joan Collins and new husband Percy Gibson, Sir Cliff Richard, Shirley Bassey and ex-EastEnder Martin Kemp.

2001 ~ Donmar, Christmas Tour

  • Evening Mail ~ Michael Ball is simply a magnificent performer.
  • The Daily Telegraph ~ Still, it's a finished artist who can make something new of There's No Business Like Show Business, sung here very slowly, almost as a lullaby until the inevitable wow finish.

1999 ~ Tour, Summer concerts

  • News of the world ~ The stage idol couldn't wait to explore for spooks after appearing at an open-air concert at creepy Glamis Castle, Angus.
  • Sunday Mercury ~ Musically, he's been there, seen it, done it and probably has a collection of T-shirts to prove it.
  • Birmingham Post ~ Never mind chocolate eggs and bunnies - Michael Ball was the Easter treat..
  • Evening Mail ~ For his marvellous voice was enough to inflame the passions of the mostly female sell-out audience.

1996 ~ Passion

1994 ~ Tour

  • Such a nice boy, and what a good voice: ...or standing nonchalantly with his hand in his trouser pocket, as self-conscious as the male models you see on the front of patterns for chunky-knits

1985 ~ Les Mis

  • Daily Telegraph ( 10/10/1985): (...) with Valjean's death after his ward's wedding to her wounded student lover. It left me doubtful about the whole ponderous exercise.
  • Time Out (17/10/1985): (...) their world is that of the showman - they are concerned to shock, rarely to provoke
  • Spectator (19/10/1985): (...) The songs are unmemorable save for one, quite rousing, beer-hall number which buzzed about in my head for a couple of hours after the performance.

1984 ~ Godspell ~

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