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Belters and bohemians: Opera Locos @Sadlers_wells

At the start of the Opera Locos performance, the announcement says that they really are singing. You could be forgiven for wondering that, given the amplification turns up the backing track and the voices so loud that you can't always tell what's real. But this is a mostly harmless and slightly eccentric blend of opera classics fused with the occasional pop classic. However, recognising the pop tunes would help if you were over a certain age. The most recent of them dates back twenty years. It's currently playing at the Peacock Theatre .  Five performers play out a variety of archetype opera characters. There's the worn-out tenor (Jesús Álvarez), the macho baritone (Enrique Sánchez-Ramos), the eccentric counter-tenor (Michaël Kone), the dreamy soprano (María Rey-Joly) and the wild mezzo-soprano (Mayca Teba). Since my singing days, I haven't recognised these types of performers. However, once, I recall a conductor saying he wanted no mezzo-sopranos singing with the s

Theatre: Legally Blonde

I finally managed to catch Legally Blonde this week, the musical that channels your inner high schoolgirl almost as successfully as Wicked (albeit without the thrillifying sets or the deafening music), but snaps to the energy of the cast, which still holds up well despite not having Oliver award-winning Sheridan Smith in it.
It is easy to see why the show won the Olivier over the other contenders as it is a lot more fun than Love Never Dies, although the only similarity this show has with Legally Blonde would be that both have their theatres are located on The Strand. And even though there are a few cringe worthy superfluous musical numbers that could have been cut to make the show sharper (and possibly funnier), composer and lyricist Laurence O'Keefe (of Batboy fame) knows how to give a show perk and a showstopper when it's called for.

Susan McFadden as Elle does a fine job in the lead role, and she has a strong supporting cast to back her up including Denise van Outen and a set of rather cute performing dogs.

It is all very light stuff, but the mostly female audience loved it, and as this show brings out your inner high schoolgirl it is hard to resist... It is booking until October some year in the future...

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