Thoroughly Modern Millie at the Bristol Hippodrome
Award winning musical Thoroughly Modern Millie tap-danced into town last night to tell the tale of Millie Dillmount, a small town girl determined to make her mark on New York City. Based on the 1967 Academy Award-winning film starring Julie Andrews in the title role, this productions features Strictly Come Dancing’s Joanne Clifton as Millie – and although her acting approach to the part isn’t exactly subtle, this is more than made up for by her excellent vocals and of course, her superb dancing.
And it’s Racky Plews’ fabulous choreography, tightly executed by the cast, which is the real joy of this show. From the wonderful ensemble numbers, including the witty tap dancing typing pool sequence, to the ‘Fred and Ginger’ dance routine on Millie’s office window ledge, and a sharply executed tango in the second Act, all were performed with breath-taking energy and style.
There are some fantastic vocal performances too – as well as Clifton’s accomplished performance, Katherine Glover as Miss Dorothy showed off a beautifully clear soprano which worked very well with Graham MacDuff’s vocals as Trevor Graydon.
Lucas Rush had the daunting task of trying to portray Mrs Meers, the fake Chinese pantomime villain of the piece. The character’s over- the- top ‘comedy’ Chinese accent and costume complete with chopsticks in the hair perhaps have less place in today’s theatre than they did in 1967 when the screenplay was originally produced. That said, Rush’s performance was superb and solidly supported by Nick Len and Andy Yau as the two Chinese brothers – one point though, the subtitles are far too small – it was quite a struggle to read them at times!
All in all this is a delightfully fun piece of theatre. The dancing provides real spectacle and there are plenty of laughs along the way too – something the audience hugely appreciated, as they showed with their standing ovation at the end.
Thoroughly Modern Millie is at the Bristol Hippodrome until 24th June 2017. Find out more HERE.