We had heard great things about this production form our other GingerWig members who had seen it in Chichester, so we were very keen to see it for ourself. With an A-list cast of acting and musical theatre talent, including Sophie Thompson, David Haig, Jamie Parker and Siubhan Harrison, this was one show we were not going to miss.
The tale of gamblers and love, based on the short stories of Damon Runyan, came to life exquisitely in the beautiful Savoy Theatre. Never before have we seen a better example of actors singing through text, when their acting never faltered. Every song was completely on point and delivered with a quality of acting and musicality that is rare to find in West End musicals.
The actors and creatives obviously had a lot of fun making the numbers their own. Nicely’s take on ‘Rockin’ the Boat’ had a very fresh feel to it, whilst Adelaide and Nathan singing ‘Sue Me’ – was an example of comic brilliance as they extended “alright already’ and ‘bail you out” by screaming into each others’ faces.
Our sign of the quality of this show was evident in the overture. Larry Blank the orchestrator, had made little tweaks here and there to make this classic musical fresh throughout. ‘If I were a Bell’ in a car horn version in the overture anticipated the setting of the show. And unlike the film, this show had all the songs in it.
The performances from the entire cast were truly remarkable, with the four leads delivering performances that any student of musical theatre would find instructive. A special mention must be made for Gavin Spokes for his fantastic singing and performance as Nicely Nicely Johnson.
We must of course mention Peter McKintosh’s design which glowed with broadway razzmatazz. And the reveal at the opening of the show was truly electrifying. Get down to the Savoy before this show closes as it is certainly not one to miss.
Guys and Dolls is showing at the Savoy Theatre until the 12th March before going on a National Tour.
Highlight of the Show – Nicely Nicely Johnson’s rendition of ‘Sit Down You’re Rockin’ The Boat’.