Bonnie and Clyde at Theatre Royal Nottingham Review


Reviewed by Louise Edwards

Straight from London’s West End and winner of Best New Musical at the WhatsOnStage Awards 2023, the notorious true crime tale of Bonnie and Clyde hits the stage at Nottingham’s Theatre Royal this week.

Set in Texas in the 1920s, the action starts with the shootout that saw the demise of the duo. They had made themselves icons of their time, regarded as Robin Hood-type mythological figures rather than violent criminals, partly due to their attractiveness and the sensational stories that followed them.

Directed and choreographed by Nick Winston, the drama flashes back to a younger Bonnie (played by Katie Tonkinson), a sweet, young girl who dreams of being an actress and with a talent for creative writing living at home with her mum (played by Taryn Sudding) and working as a waitress. Ted Hinton (Played by Daniel Reid Walters) is a family friend who is protective of her and keen to take their relationship further.

Meanwhile, Clyde, played by Alex James-Hatton, has just been sent to prison for armed robbery with his brother, Buck (played by Sam Ferriday). They have managed to escape and are on the run. Playing by the rules has not worked for them and a life of crime seems like the sensible route. However, Blanche (played by Daisy Wood-Davis), Buck’s wife has other ideas and she insists he go back to prison and pay for his crime. She is heavily religious and thinks this is the only way they will be truly free. Providing a gospel influence with his amazing voice, Jaz Ellington plays the Preacher.

Clyde isn’t going back to prison, where he is sexually abused and bullied, and, after being caught again and incarcerated he persuades Bonnie to sneak a gun in so he can escape. Bonnie is completely love-struck and under Clyde’s spell as he whisks her away on the murderous road trip, which in total saw the deaths of 13 victims, mostly police officers. As Bonnie sold her poems to the newspapers and left behind spools of film of photographs taken on their journey they soon became media celebrities.

All of the acting and singing are amazing and faultless with powerful voices that convey high emotion. With over 20 musical numbers the live band led by Issie Osbourne is incredible.

The backdrop to the stage effectively gives another dimension to the production, with its use of video design, by Mina Dunn.

Bonnie and Clyde is a must see piece of musical theatre that captivates, bringing the infamous tale to life through song and drama. The show explores themes of love, loyalty, and the pursuit of the American Dream against the backdrop of the Great Depression.

Critics may argue that the glamourisation and portrayal of extreme violence but there is no denying the thrilling ride about the complexities of human nature that this play takes the audience on.

Rating: 5/5

Tickets cost from £23 (booking fees may apply).

Bonnie and Clyde is at the Theatre Royal in Nottingham until Saturday 18 May 2024, for more information or to book tickets visit

or call the box office on 0115 989 5555.

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