Guys and Dolls – Southampton Mayflower until 21st May then Continuing to Tour
Made popular by the MGM 1955 film starring Marlon Brandon, Jean Simmons, Frank Sinatra and Vivian Blaine this show is undoubtedly in my top three all time favourite shows. Consequently I’ve seen many stage versions and some with equal star billing as the motion picture which started my love affair with it. So did this fresh touring company live up to my high expectations?
From the very first note to the closing, this production oozes professionalism and verve. Leading characters Sky Masterson, Nathan Detroit, Miss Adelaide and Sarah Brown played by Richard Fleeshman, Maxwell Caulfield, Lucy Jane Adcock and Anna O’Byrne respectively were superbly cast. Fleeshman providing us with the charisma Sky commands is equally matched to O’Byrne’s sweetness as Sarah Brown. Whilst Caulfield as Nathan gives us a loveable rogue opposite Adcock’s adorable Adelaide.
The whole cast expertly directed by Gordon Greenberg give the joy and effervescent performances that this show demands. Sublime choreography by Carlos Acosta and Andrew Wright is perfectly executed, whilst the musical direction under Andy Massey leads to some outstanding performances of the many iconic songs such as Luck Be A Lady, Guys and Dolls and Sit Down, You’re Rockin’ The Boat. Which brings me to a show stealing moment by Jack Edwards as Nicely Nicely whose characterisation throughout was brilliant, however in this rendition he truly shone and got the adulation from the appreciative audience he so deserved.
So to summarise and return to my question, yes this touring production exceeded my high expectations and I’d implore you to “Follow The Fold” and catch it at your nearest venue, you won’t be disappointed!