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Thursday, 1 October 2015

Review: Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour at Newcastle Live Theatre





Explosive Action Comes to The Live

Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour
Newcastle Live Theatre
Until Saturday 24th October 2015

Photo: Manuel Harlan
They sing like angels and they have dreams, just like any other kids. The only difference for these 6 girls from Oban, Scotland, is they’re off to discover themselves on a trip to the capital.

Photo: Manuel Harlan
The show opens with the 6 girls, in perfect school uniform singing Mendelssohn’s Elijah. Their voices combine to make a truly beautiful sound. They are going to perform in a singing competition which means that thy need to wait for their teacher at 6am at the station. Quickly the action spins to some quick introductions.

Photo: Manuel Harlan
Fionnular (Dawn Sievewright) lives in a council house bought with granda’s money. Manda (Kirsty MacLaren) lives with her Da after their mam left them. Chell (Caroline Dayga) has had a lot of tragedy in her family. Orla (Melissa Allan) has had a run in with cancer but seems better after a trip to Lourdes.  Kylah (Frances Mayli McCann) sings in a band whilst Kay (Karen Fishwick) appears to have everything going for her.

Photo: Manuel Harlan
The show works because, not only can the cast sing wonderfully but they also come across as authentic. As the story follows the girls on their journey to Edinburgh we see their dreams, the insecurities and their humour. The six girls play a variety of roles from a fellow pregnant school friend to the random men they meet along the way.

After sneaking drink on board, the trip was going to have a lively start. When the teacher tells them to be good and be unsupervised until the competition starts at 6pm the real adventures begin. What trouble can 6 teenage girls with a love of drink get up to?

The exposition is subtly interwoven within the story in Lee Hall’s adaptation of Alan Warner’s The Sopranos. This helps keep the pace up and under the direction of Vicky Featherstone there is always something happening on stage.

Photo: Manuel Harlan
When the story centres around Kylah joining her band her love ELO comes to light and the inclusion of Mr Blue Sky is one of the many musical treats. The songs are performed live with a young talented band on stage. Amy Shackcloth on keyboards; Becky Brass on drums and Emily Linden on guitar do a cracking job on a few of Jeff Lynne’s finest compositions.

Photo: Peter Dibdin
The show is a free spirit, a punkish play with a musical core rather than another typical jukebox musical that lacks a story. The story is a strong one. Whilst the passage to adulthood is an often told story, this story feels fresh and exciting and is full of energy. In short: great music and exciting action make this production hard to beat. Tickets are being quickly snapped up – it is no surprise that this show has performed to sell out crowds throughout its tour. It is fabulous.

Photo: Peter Dibdin
Adapted by Lee Hall from The Sopranos by Alan Warner
Directed by Vicky Featherstone
Music Supervisor Martin Lowe

Designed by Chloe Lamford
Lighting Design by Lizzie Powell

Choreography by Imogen Knight

This review was written by Stephen Oliver for the North East Theatre Guide from Jowheretogo PR (www.jowheretogo.com). Follow Jo on twitter @jowheretogo, Stephen @panic_c_button or like Jowheretogo on Facebook www.facebook.com/Jowheretogo


Photo: Manuel Harlan
On The Web:

Tickets
Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour opens at Live Theatre on Thursday 1 October and runs until Saturday 24 October

For more information on Our Ladies of Perpetual Succour and to buy tickets costing between £26 to £10, over 60s concessions £16 and other concessions between £18 to £6 call Live Theatre’s box office on (0191) 232 1232 or see www.live.org.uk.
 




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