Reviewed by Sasha Nye
The Hawth in Crawley is easy to find and has a large amount of free car parking. It is a modern venue with large auditoriums. There are plenty of toilets, a cafe, restaurant and a number of bars for reasonably priced refreshments. The staff are always very helpful and friendly. What’s great about The Hawth is that there are no restrictive view seats in my opinion. Wherever you get seated you will get a great view of the stage. I’m never disappointed when I visit here. Last night I had the pleasure of seeing Whitney Queen of the Night.
If this show sets out to celebrate the life, music and talent of Whitney Elizabeth Houston then it certainly succeeded. Whitney Houston is one of the most iconic female artists of all time. In 2009, the Guinness book of records cited her as the most awarded female act of all time with over 200 million records sold worldwide. Whitney also starred in a few movies too; Waiting to Exhale, The Preachers Wife, Cinderella and the box office smash The Bodyguard where she starred alongside Kevin Costner.
Whitney Houston is one of those versatile artists where everybody loves at least one of her songs so Shanice Smith had big shoes to fill.
The stage of last night’s show was simply set but effective. The backing singers strutted their way on to the stage where the five-piece band was already waiting for them. Lastly Shanice Smith aka Whitney graced the stage. The first half showcased the talented trio of backing singers perfectly. In fact, they held a lot of the songs together. Because of this, if I am honest I commented to my sister who came along with me that I was a little underwhelmed so far. I didn’t expect Shanice to sound exactly like Whitney as that is near on impossible, but I was doubtful by the end of the first half if she could hit any of the high notes at all.
However, I ate my words in the second half and I think she had been saving it all up. Shanice came out with a bang from the get-go, and she was spectacular. Her performance of ‘I will always love you‘ which is probably Whitney’s most iconic song was stunningly beautiful. Her range is phenomenal, and she deserved the standing ovation that she got at the end of the song.
Her talent continued to shine throughout the whole second half with the audience on their feet dancing for most of it.
Highlights for me were the Whitney/Mariah duet… AMAZING!! and I will always love you…
If you ‘want to dance with somebody’, maybe get ‘So Emotional’ then this is most definitely the show for you.
Amazing vocals from the star and the backing singers, beautiful music, great staging… a great night out for all. Get your dancing shoes on and your singing voices ready and go and see Whitney Queen of the Night, you won’t be disappointed.
Whitney Queen of the Night is currently on tour around the UK, for more information and tour dates visit www.queenofthenight.co.
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