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September 8, 2015 / basabbott

The Show of the Year


Sweet Charity
New Wolsey Theatre, Ipswich

The minute you walk in the joint you can see this is a show of distinction, a real big spender.
Peter Rowe’s production is a juicy bite of the Big Apple, bringing back the Broadway of 50 years ago.
For an English provincial theatre to carry off something this good, with all the razzmatazz of the original, is quite remarkable.
The singing and music, the colour, verve, energy and pulsating New York life are all there.
Few shows have so many top songs – Hey, Big Spender, If They Could See Me Now, The Rhythm of Life.
When the ‘goils’ sing Hey, Big Spender you can see a line of progression, from The Blue Angel to Sally Bowles, with life as a Cabaret.
Katie Birtill is awkward, kooky and magical as Charity and has a glorious voice. James Haggie gives Oscar a nerdish, young Woody Allen quality. Dan De Cruz does great things with The Rhythm of Life.
This really is the show of the year and can be seen until September 26th.

Basil Abbott

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