Reviewed by Louise Watts
Last evening, I visited The Hawth theatre in Crawley, Sussex to see Beyond the Barricade for the second time in 6 months! The musical theatre song extravaganza is celebrating its 20th Anniversary this year and it is plain to see why it is still going strong after all these years!
The incredible quartet comprising Andy Reiss, David Fawcett, Poppy Tierney and Shona Lindsay have played more musical theatre roles between them than my nan has had hot dinners! Poppy has recently played the role of Mary Poppins, Shona is the youngest actress to have played Christine in Phantom of the Opera, David Fawcett has played the leading role of Jean Valjean in Les Miserables several times and Andy Reiss himself has performed in Les Miserables whilst directing also!! The talent on stage was immense! Accompanied by their band, they performed some of the best loved musical theatre hits of all time.
When the show opened to 4 beautifully presented superstars with their rendition of “Show Must Go On” from We Will Rock You, the audience were sucked in straight away. A fantastically appropriate song to open the show, bearing in mind it is the 20-year anniversary tour and I for one hope they are still performing in another 20 years’ time!
I took with me my 14-year-old musical theatre mad daughter. She was as taken as I was from the moment the show started. We particularly enjoyed the way that several songs from each musical are played so you can get a real feel of what the musical is about. My daughter said she found it incredible that not only were their performances faultless, but they all got into character and acted the part of that character through their singing. The emotions on their faces, particularly Shona’s were captivating!
My favourite performance of the evening has to be Shona and David singing from Phantom of the Opera. The music from that show is powerful and strong and that was matched by their performances. I had goose bumps throughout.
I could have literally sat there all-night listening to every song that they could have sung, but sadly there is a time limit on everything and last evening was no different. It was incredible watching the team effort performing Les Miserables and I could feel myself being transported to the theatre imagining the whole show being performed with them performing the lead roles, it was truly mind blowing!
The Hawth was a lovely venue as always and it was lovely to see the auditorium packed out on a Wednesday night. The staff were friendly and helpful as usual and the bar facilities were well stocked and running well. Parking is incredibly easy at The Hawth and free which is always a bonus! One of my favourite things about The Hawth theatre is that there are no “bad” seats. Whether you sit in the front, the back or at the side, there is always a fantastic view and this is quite a rarity amongst theatres.
I would thoroughly recommend Beyond the Barricade to any musical theatre lovers. It is an absolutely wonderful evening packed with all your favourite songs and sung by some of the biggest names on stage.
Beyond the Barricade are currently on tour around the UK, for more information and tour dates visit www.beyondthebarricade.com.
For other shows at The Hawth in Crawley visit hawth.co.uk or call the box office on 01293 553636.
The Hawth, Hawth Avenue, Crawley, Sussex, RH10 6YZ | 01293 553636