Life is a CABARET! wouldn’t look out of place on a West End stage

Whooping, cheering, jumping, screaming – and that’s just the audience. Stage Musicals Society showcased their latest performance of Life is a Cabaret at the Riley Smith theatre across two nights and certainly did it with style.

Not even the most hardnosed, musical-phobe could fail to appreciate the enthusiasm and excitement the whole cast put into each and every number. From the sing-a-long group pieces where energy levels were through the roof to more intimate and dramatic solo performances, the whole show was a non-stop journey of fun.

It would be impossible to pick just one performance to say was the best. Each number had its own unique quirks and stand out moments. What’s even more impressive is that each and every performance was done with such precision and flair that they wouldn’t be out of place on the West End stage.

Despite not being able to pick a top performance I will give special mentions to Joe Gaus for his fantastic performance of ‘Sweet Transvestite’ from Rocky Horror Picture Show and Chantelle Brooks for ‘Surabaya Santa’ from Songs For a New World. Both gave performances that had the audience mesmerized, gripped and thoroughly entertained. Also Joshua Wren’s rendition of ‘Empty Chairs at Empty Tables’ was so powerful and emotive it’s a surprise to hear he’s a newcomer to the stage. This is without mentioning one of the most comical and creative moments in the show: The Ashatones’ Frozen medley. Somehow I don’t think I’ll be able to hear ‘Let It Go’ in quite the same way again.

The whole show from start to finish was fantastic and the preview the company gave at the end of ‘Sit Down You’re Rocking The Boat’ from their upcoming production of Guys and Dolls was amazing. If this show was anything to go by I’ll certainly be getting my ticket for what look to be a ‘musicaltastic’ year!

Emily Willson

Image: Robert Palin

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