by Julie Wallis
Calamity Jane, New Alexandra Theatre until June 18th
Calamity Jane is showing at The New Alexandra Theatre until 18th June. Is it a hit or a calamity? I can tell you, dear reader that this production by BMOS Musical Theatre Company is a rip roaring success.
I’m sure everyone knows the story of tom-boy Calamity Jane, or Clam as her friends call her. She goes to Chicago to bring Adelaide the show girl back to Deadwood, gets the wrong girl, but it all works out in the end.
Act one starts with Clam and Rattlesnake on the Deadwood stage, an impressive full size stage coach matches the impressive voice of Faye O’Leary who plays Calamity Jane. A role, Miss O’Leary may well have been born for, I adored her singing voice and her authentic sounding American accent which she carried off well, without ever sounding forced.
BMOS have a fantastic collection of singers in their group. None of these well-known and loved songs disappoint. I must admit my favourite scenes involved Susan , played by Sophie Koumides who has a beautiful voice, and of course Alistair Joliffe who plays Wild Bill Hickock does a perfect job, having some mighty big shoes to fill in taking on the Howard Keel role. But for fans of the 1953 movie never fear! The cast of this production do justice to this classic.
The sets are wonderful and are bought to life by great lighting, this is a very colourful production and I was fully immersed. I’d go so far to say I was in Deadwood sitting in the Golden Garter with all the characters in this fantastic show.
My only disappointment is this was such a big and colourful production I did find myself wondering what it would look like on a much bigger stage. I do love the New Alex and one of the reasons I love it is it is a nice size stage, big enough to carry any show but small enough to maintain a sense of intimacy but I think this particular production would look great on a larger stage too, although it loses nothing by being shown on the stage at The New Alex.
Running time for production is at over one hour for act one and 55 minutes for act two so you do get a full nights entertainment for the price of your tickets. With a plethora of toe tapping songs you will find yourself singing along to this western extravaganza. It is everything musical theatre should be, and that is a great night out!
Once again The New Alexandra theatre hosts a great production and I loved every minute of my visit to this super theatre as I always do. With a warm welcome from the friendly staff they always provide a top night, many thanks for yet another great evening.
Julie Wallis loves musicals and was invited to this this local production by the New Alexandra Theatre. She has not been paid for this article.