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Music in CardiffReviews

Singin’ In The Rain

6 December 2013

singinWales Millennium Centre 3rd December 2013

Singin’ In The Rain’s second stop on its nationwide tour landed in Wales Millennium Centre on Tuesday.

Direct from its successful stint on the West End, Singin’ In The Rain is based on the 1952 film which tracks the journey from silent to sound films in 1920s’ night and is an event not to be missed this Christmas!

It is quite easy to forget the main plot when considering the work due to the iconic Gene Kelly scene; however, the musical re-establishes the importance of the story and the principles it holds in history.

Despite some of the scruffy transitions, the production’s set was a sight to behold throughout the evening, capturing the electric essence of Broadway to the bustling studio of ‘Monumental Pictures’.  The orchestra’s place on stage, elevated above where the action was taking place was a bonus and really contributed to the musical drama taking place on stage; however, they were hidden by the set for quite a bit of the performance which was a tad disappointing considering they are also typically hidden in the pit.

Faye Tozer, of pop band Steps fame, took on the role of squeaky high-pitched airhead, Lina Lamont and provided comedic relief throughout the evening. Although her acting was a little over the top in places, her number ‘What’s Wrong With Me?’ was sheer laugh out loud value.

The audience were left in awe of the sheer energy and stamina the three leads held throughout the evening, calling for seven minute tap dancing scenes to intimate love scenes. The relationship between Kathy and Don really clutches at the heart strings and provides an emotional depth to the madness of the 1920s’ film studio.

The true highlight of the evening was James Leece’s powerful portrayal of Don Lockwood, who is barely off stage for the two and a half hours, which oozed all the charm and charisma of Gene Kelly. The iconic scene whereby Don celebrates his love for Kathy in the rain was not an imitation of the 1952 film’s scene nor overrated but allowed Leece to give his own take of the scene.

Despite containing one of the most iconic scenes in history, don’t go expecting a tribute act to Gene Kelly; the musical is far more than that it has a very poignant story with foot-tappingly good musical numbers.  After seeing Singin’ on Tuesday evening it is very easy to see why Singin’ still remains one of the greatest American films today.

Singin’ In The Rain is at the Wales Millennium Centre until 5th January 2014.

Review written by Jordan Nicholls (BMus, Year 2).

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