Bat Out Of Hell – The Musical: Review

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Guest Post by David Thomas – Head of Theatre at Super Break

‘It was Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap that first asked audiences to “Keep The Secret.” The play is now 65 years young and still going strong. “Keep The Secret” is also the mantra at “Harry Potter And The Cursed Child”, which, based on current demand, could even outrun The Mousetrap. No such pledge is required of audience’s at Bat Out Of Hell, which opened at The Dominion Theatre last night, because whatever they tell you, nothing will not prepare you one bit for this weird, wonderful and totally entertaining musical mayhem. So I won’t even begin to try…

Just leave all your assumptions at the door and treat yourselves to some of the greatest song-writing of the 20th Century. In fact, the sheer brilliance of song-writing such as “Bat Out Of Hell”, “I Would Do Anything For Love” & “You Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth” puts them in that special class with Cole Porter, Irving Berlin and the Gershwins… Although the 21st Century is still a mere teenager, it is sorely lacking in candidates to compete with this level of quality.

And boy do this cast know how to deliver these great numbers! The insanely talented Andrew Polenc, who won the “Joe Allen Best West End Debut Award” at last year’s The Stage Debut Awards, burns more energy in than a marathon runner in the lead role of Strat. And yet his vocals, as with all the cast, maintain that fine, fine balance between power and feeling throughout. In fact, there are so many virtuoso performances that it’s difficult to give full credit to them all; Christine Bennington, as Strat’s star-crossed lover Raven, Rob Fowler and Sharon Sexton (bliss, bliss, bliss!) and don’t get me started on Danielle Steers… a star turn turning super-nova. So don’t worry about the secret… just keep the memory.’

 

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