Opera Boys at Playhouse, Weston
Before the performance even started, it had all the elements in place to delight a partisan and primarily older audience.
Four classically trained and powerful voices, smart suits and a practised line in crowd pleasing patter made for a very soothing evening’s entertainment as Nathan, Rob, Colin and Michael harmonised their way through sumptuous arias from La Traviata, Carmen and Rigoletto during the first half of the show.
Their harmonies were superb, and their West End repertoire proved to be equally impressive, as the delivery of three of my favourite pieces was to prove.
“I Dreamed a Dream” and “Bring him home” from Les Miserables brought tears to my eyes, and “Music of the Night” from Phantom of the Opera had me airing my tonsils in full Sarah Brightman mode, much to the pained consternation of all around me!
However, I did feel that some of the musical crossover choices jarred a little with me, as the singalong style requested from the audience for songs like “That’s Amore” didn’t quite work, and the somewhat jaded routine of choosing an audience member to come onto the stage and be serenaded in a protracted fashion to the strains of “O Sole Mio” had me positively wincing.
The routines with the chairs might also need a bit of re-thinking in my opinion: it worked really well for the staging of “You raise me up” (Italian version), but when the Opera Boys retreated to the chairs at the back of the stage with their back to the audience for the “Toreador Song”, it looked as if they were lined up at urinals!
However, all was forgiven by the rendition of a wonderful “Nessun Dorma” for the closing aria, and there is no doubt that this show is a great night of musical entertainment and quality for anyone who enjoys crossover musical genres performed with style and sparkle.
See what’s coming up at The Playhouse, Weston