Friday, 20 December 2013
'Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story on Stage' Piccadilly Theatre ***
I am often concerned with the theatre industries decision to adapt well-known films and adapting them for the theatrical stage. The world-renowned 1987 blockbuster 'Dirty Dancing' has now been revived again for the for the West End stage and for me it's rather disappointing in quite a significant number of aspects. The narrative is exactly the same as the original film version where we are transported to the summer of 1963 and introduced to a Young teenage peaceloving girl Frances 'Baby' Houseman who along with her family spends their holiday at Kellermans. Throughout her vacations she becomes besotted by Johnny Castle, a very muscular and talented dancer at the holiday and baby does a favour by dancing on behalf off a fellow dancer who has recently been raped and illegally has an abortion. However this is a problem as Baby has no previous dance experience whatsoever and it's up to Johnny to teach you how to become a world-class dancer answer love begins to exude through them at romanticism of the passionate routines. I feel it quite unattractive as a theatrical writer Eleanor Bergstein has solely based on your entire film narrative and I feel it's a shame as the production does have potential to be a phenomenal musical production. The performances by the shows to lead actors Paul-Michael Jones as Johnny Castle and Rebecca Hodge as Baby of a satisfactory nature as it showed that the relationship was and disingenuous. However their dance however presence was effortless so a huge congratulations to Kate Champion for her beautiful choreography. Sarah Tipple's directing style for 'Dirty Dancing: The Classic Story on Stage' was of a lacklustre quality as it seemed that the show had not been rehearsed as much as a West End production should be and this meant that a vast amount of queues were missed and mistakes appeared which aggravated me immensely. It feels that the Piccadilly Theatre is a cursed theatre venue as its previous tenant was in fact the financial flop of a musical theatre piece 'Viva Forever!'. Moreover Stephen Brimson Lewis' set design was of the horrendous fashion as the musical only allowed as design to be of a simplistic nature and this is not what you would expect from a musical of this kind. The only musical that had achieved this form of design is the wonderful 'A Chorus Line'. Even though I did somewhat have 'The Time of My Life', I didn't have 'Hungry Eyes' for it though. This is certainly a 'Dirty Dancing fan then this is the show for you.
Posted by Kieran (The Dramatic) Knowles at 22:45