22 May 2016
Reviewed by Debbie Lowndes
We arrived at the Buxton Opera House at 7pm and collected our tickets from the box office. Staff with the entrance and box office were welcoming and polite. They readily offered assistance. We made our way to the upstairs bar for a drink prior to the show. Service within the bar was efficient and again the service was friendly. My husband and I both use the toilets they were clean and smelt fresh. They were well stocked with toilet paper, hand soap etc.
The theatre operates a tannoy system and they use this we announce when the show is due to start e.g. ‘Tonight’s performance is due to commence in three minutes’.
We were directed to our seats, we were in the dress circle and the seats were comfortable. The theatre was quite full as it is a small old theatre. I believe that there were 302 in for the performance. The architectural and decor is magnificent and a credit to the theatre as the upkeep must be costly.
The show opened and Elio Pace who was singing Billy Joel’s songs. He took the time to explain how he had become a massive Billy Joel fan from a young age. He then ran though how Billy Joel started within the music industry and his love for classical music etc. He regularly advised when singing a song which album it appeared on etc. The band backing Elio were amazing and a very talented bunch of musicians. My personal favourite has to be the fantastic saxophone player. He is one extremely note perfect talented young man!!! There was a definite bond between the band and this shone throughout the performance. They looked like they were having fun on the stage too. Elio sang rock songs, love songs, acapellas and ballads. Many instruments were played by the band the piano, drums, guitars, keyboard, clarinet, saxophone, mouth organ and many more. Elio was the main pianist and he was of high standard and entertaining too.
After the interval the more popular songs came and the entertainment level went up a notch. Everyone was singing and dancing, the atmosphere was great. We thoroughly enjoyed our evening and the band and production really did credit the Billy Joel. It seem like we were watching and listening to the man himself. You could not fault the show anyway. I will recommend the songbook show to my friends and family, it is well worth a visit. The audience ranged in age and everyone around us appeared to be having a great evening.
Well done a true credit to Billy Joel. One talented bunch of people and the show has been well thought out and practised. Truly amazing, a must see for all Billy Joel fans. Even if you are not a fan you are sure set to have a great evening if you go to see this show.
Uptown Girl was great fun for audience and band alike.
Elio Pace is currently on tour with The Billy Joel Songbook, for more information and tour dates visit www.eliopace.com.
For other shows at the Buxton Opera House visit www.buxtonoperahouse.org.uk.
Buxton Opera House, Water Street, Buxton, Derbyshire, SK17 6XN | 0845 127 2190