Local esteemed theatre group, Kinetic, opened its much anticipated production of “Chicago” last night, at the “Royal College of Welsh Drama” and what a Chicago style opening it was!
Chicago the musical, tells the story of how two showgirls, are arrested for murder, one for the murder of her husband and her sister, then the other, for the murder of their lover. They both end up in the women’s block, in cook county jail and soon come into conflict, with each other, under the watchful eye, of “Moma”.
Their characters thrive on limelight and it becomes apparent, that “Roxie Hart”, played by the incredibly talented “Georgia Tonge”, wants to steal the limelight from, “Velma Kelly”, played by “Zoe Martin”, who may we add, was perfect for this role.
The choreography, was fantastic, throughout the show, but especially during the “Cell Block Tango”, the ensemble were brilliant and oozed 1920’s Chicago glamour.
Playing the part of, larger than life, lawyer, Billy Flynn, was “Harri Herniman”, who was fantastic, his artistic abilities, were that of a west end star and I’m sure he will continue to grace us, with his superb acting abilities, for many years to come. The one scene, where he strips down to his white fronts, was hilarious and had the whole audience, in drones of laughter.
“Taylor Morris” plays the part of, somewhat witty, “Amos Hart” and was again fantastic. “Morris” really engaged, with his character and displayed, the introvert characteristics, that “Hart” has. Morris’ rendition of “Cellophane”, was very touching and was certainly a highlight, of the production, for us. A very talented, young man, indeed.
The women’s block, is presided over, by none other than, leading lady, Matron “Moma” Morton, who was played by “Rhian Holmes”. This role can be somewhat difficult to play, due to the actress having to have a powerful and authoritative stage presence, with some “All that Jazz” thrown in and we were pleased to witness, “Holmes”, deliver a solid and graceful performance.
“Jack Meek” plays the role of “Fred Casely” and “MC”, who was again, superb. “Meek” had a great stage presence and seemed to really connect with his character, which is vital in any production. We also have to comment, on his dancing abilities, as we have taken note, from the production programme, of how “Meek” has been focusing, on his dancing abilities. I felt that they were highly polished and slick, keep up those swerve moves, young man!
The role of “Mary Sunshine”, was played by “Tom Price”. This character is, a pantomime dame, almost, but to be precise, a news reporter, with a softer side for criminals. The naive side, of Sunshine’s character, was played out well and Price’s role, was further enhanced, by his bubbly and dizzy acting skills.
In conclusion, we must congratulate, the whole production team and cast, as it was a superb production and expertly arranged. It made us very proud, to see how much, wonderful talent, we have here in Wales and how important it is to showcase that. The “Kinetic School of Performing arts”, are certainly doing this and this was a gentle reminder, of how important it is, to support our local theatre schools.
You can see this wonderful show for yourself, at the beautiful “Royal College of Welsh Drama”, until Friday, July 26. You’ll have a fantastic night out and at a fraction of the price, of national touring productions.