And, the raving is well justified. Andrew Lloyd Webber’s version of Billy Wilder’s 1950 film is certainly brilliantly staged. Nikolai Foster’s production promotes the very building itself to star status; alongside Ria Jones as Norma and Danny Mac as Joe. Many of the scenes take place not only on stage in the round, but backstage, in the balcony, around the wonderful 16-piece orchestra, up in the rigs of the fly tower and even underneath the raked seating.
The music is of course great, the singing spot on, and the tone just right.
It is a great production of a great musical (if not quite pipping the superlative Watermill Theatre's 2009 production at the Comedy Theatre.)
"Oh, they shot my screenplay... they shot the thing dead."
High points (and there are many)?
All of "Let’s Have Lunch"
Most of "With One Look"
Everything about "New Ways to Dream"
And all of "As If We Never Said Goodbye"
The rumbling baritone of Adam Pearce as Max Von Mayerling
Douglas O’Connell’s video design - it overlays much of the action on stage
Ria Jones's make-up
Award of the night?
Danny Mac's matinee idol jaw-line