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REVIEW: I Should Be So Lucky: at Sunderland Empire

I Should Be So Lucky: The Stock Aitken Waterman Musical

Sunderland Empire 

Until Saturday 27 April 2024

Tickets: Https://Tinyurl.Com/Ishouldbesoluckysund *

This is perhaps the craziest musical of the year and it has landed in Wearside this week. 

It shouldn't work, but add some Stock, Aitken and Waterman magic, and a very funny script from writer and director Debbie Isitt,, and you end up with a delightful musical.

It is a well worn trope. Bride gets jilted at the altar but goes on honeymoon anyway but this time she flies with most of her wedding entourage. Look, an easy comparison is Mamma Mia on crack, and sure, this is genuinely a bat shit crazy production, but it works. It is as fun and carefree as the letters page of Smash Hits.

At the start we have Ella (Lucie-Mae Sumner) about to marry Nathan (Billy Roberts). However Nathan had doubts after his Grandad spoke to him. After leaving Ella at the altar, a decision is made to go on the Honeymoon in Turkey without him. There seems to be just a bridal suite booked but that doesn't stop half a dozen landing there. 

There are twists in the tale as hotel employee Nadeem (Matthew Croke) takes a shine to Ella and a whirlwind holiday romance begins. Of course Nathan is persuaded by best man Ash (Giovanni Spanò) to fly over and fix matters…

This is a jukebox musical that is filled with hits and talking of hits, every excuse to put the SAW lyrics in there and sing a few lines has been taken. 

Using melodies galore, no song over extends its welcome.  A live band executes a back catalogue that represents much of what was selling in the back end of the 80s, and the cast make the task of singing the songs look easy.

From the Team that gave us Kylie we get actual Kylie. Lifting a leaf out of the Snow White textbook,  Kylie appears in a mirror, offering advice and reflection.  

As the tale flies through the script, and the songs, there is real pace and energy. The set and light help keep the action flowing (the crew backstage must have been working hard!)  

The opening night Sunderland crowd lapped it up.

This is lightweight Mills and Boons stuff set to a familiar soundtrack. But… Do you know what? It is such a pleasure to leave a theatre with a crowd that is buzzing because they clearly enjoyed themselves.  

Flaws are there for anyone wanting to be a snob. Possibly too many characters to follow, possibly too much love at first sight. But Shakespeare got away with that too, and I'd much rather sit through this again. 

This is bonkers. But it left a smile on the audience's faces, and that's what a night at the theatre should do.

Review: Stephen Oliver 

Photos: Marc Brenner


I Should Be So Lucky: The Stock Aitken Waterman Musical will hit Sunderland Empire’s stage from Monday 22 – Saturday 27 April 2024. Tickets are available online now at *

*A £3.65 transaction fee applies to online bookings.


Kylie - Disco: Guest List Edition (Deluxe Limited) Boxset is available from our affiliates Townsend Music: LINK

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