Friday, 13 March 2015

Review: The Producers (UK Tour) at the Churchill Theatre Bromley



The Producers (UK Tour)
Churchill Theatre Bromley
Reviewed on Wednesday 11th March 2015
★★★

Fourteen years after it first opened on Broadway, Mel Brooks' musical The Producers is back with a new UK tour directed by Top Hat's Matthew White. The show sees producers Max Bialystock and Leo Bloom launching a dodgy scheme to make money by producing a Broadway flop. Surprisingly things don't to plan and the pair encounter one or two 'eccentric' characters along the way.

Brooks and Thomas Meehan's script remains comical gold; it is absolute genius. The piece is so cleverly written that it's hard to imagine a production of the show not being funny. At times this new production may look a little cheap and cheerful, but overall the standard is high. It's interesting to see what White has done with the piece, those who saw it in the West End will notice a different vibe. There is strong choreography by Lee Proud.

Tiffany Graves as Ulla
Cory English reprises his portrayal of Max Bialystock. He is absolutely terrific, pitching the comedy perfectly throughout. English's performance has no boundaries, with his almighty rendition of 'Betrayed' standing out as the evening's highlight. He's joined by Jason Manford as Leo Bloom, Max's 'number two'. Manford's performance is also strong, with his vocals proving to be up to scratch. 

Elsewhere Tiffany Graves is divine as Ulla, making quite an entrance with her first number 'When You've Got It, Flaunt It'. Fresh from playing Sweeney Todd, David Bedella proves he is as diverse as ever whilst portraying director Roger De Bris alongside the one and only Louie Spence as his assistant. Returning to his theatrical roots, Spence owns the stage like nobody else can, making the most out of every moment.

The production's ensemble impress throughout. Not only are they brilliant singers and dancers, but this show also allows them to show off as talented character actors. Popping up in various costumes and wigs, the ensemble provide countless scene stealing moments. They work hard and keep the pace fast moving.

The Producers is one hell of a show! The theatrical jokes work a treat whilst the comedy is consistently crazy, wacky and very much in your face! The budget may have been spent on casting star names rather than designing a glittering set, but the company pull it out the bag. Uproarious fun.

Reviewed by Andrew Tomlins (Editor)

The Producers runs at the Churchill Theatre Bromley until Saturday 14th March and tours the UK until 11th July 2015, including a stop at the Milton Keynes Theatre between 30th March and 4th April. Please visit www.theproducersmusical.co.uk for further information and tickets.

Photo Credit: Manuel Harlan

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