Theatre

Blood Brothers At Lighthouse, Poole Review

TICKETS TO SEE THE SHOW WERE GIFTED TO THE REVIEWER AND GUEST FOR THE PURPOSES OF WRITING THE REVIEW.

Reviewed by Anita Connor

This was our first visit to the Lighthouse at Poole. It is the largest arts centre in the United Kingdom outside of London. It is a very bright and welcoming space and the staff we interacted with were pleasant and helpful.

Blood Brothers, a musical by Willy Russell, tells the story of Mrs Johnstone, struggling to bring up her seven children in the backstreets of Liverpool. Becoming pregnant yet again, she learns she is expecting twins and would have to bring them up without the help of her husband. Her rich employer, Mrs. Lyons, persuades her to give her one of the new arrivals as she has been unable to have children of her own but promises that Mrs. Johnstone would be able to see him every day when she cleaned her house. However, this promise was soon broken by Mrs. Lyons, and this ultimately led to the tragic ending.

When Mickey and Eddie become best friends, they call themselves blood brothers, although they are both ignorant of the fact that they are actually fraternal twins who have been separated at birth and now lead very different lives. This is the classic nature versus nurture theory being portrayed in the 1960’s to 1980’s. Class divides were really evident then and some would argue, this is equally relevant in today’s society.

It is recommended for ages 12 upwards as there is some adult language, sexual inuendo and violence. When in the theatre, before going into the auditorium, there is a warning about swearing, smoke and haze and gun shots. (This doesn’t stop you jumping when the gun shots are fired!)

Niki Colwell Evans, who plays Mrs. Johnstone, has an excellent singing voice but is also a great comedic actress. The second most important role is that of the narrator, played by Richard Munday. He has the task of telling the whole story as it unfolds before your eyes, and he also had a terrific voice. The 2 brothers, Mickey and Eddie, bring comedy into the production, especially when they were young boys and teenagers and portray the difficulties of growing from childhood to adulthood. The ending of the story is very dramatic and heart-rending, and you could feel the tension and emotion in the theatre. There was a standing ovation at the end of the performance from almost everyone in the auditorium and I felt that this production of Blood Brothers certainly warranted one. I had previously seen Blood Brothers once before, but this production was better.

Ticket prices range from £25.00 to £57.50 with the matinee performances being a little less expensive. We parked in the Dolphin shopping multi-storey car park opposite the theatre which cost £2 if arriving after 18.00 hours. You could pay for your ticket before walking across to the theatre which I would recommend as it saved queueing after the performance. There is also a level surface car park nearby.

I would definitely recommend seeing Blood Brothers – there are a few tickets still available at the time of writing this review.

Rating: 

The show is on from Wednesday 23rd November 2022 until Saturday 26th November 2022

Tickets cost from £30.00

For more information or to book tickets please visit Blood Brothers · Lighthouse (lighthousepoole.co.uk) or phone the box office on 01202 280000

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