The Opera House – Manchester
The first thing you notice about this production is that whilst the story is very true to the Whoopie Goldberg movie, the music and even the rhythm of the stage show is very different. This was the second time I have seen the stage show, the first time was at the Palladium in London, and this production at the Manchester Opera House was definitely the better of the two.
Unlike the film which is almost entirely about the character of Delores Van Cartier, the stage show gives greater depth to the fears and dreams of the bumbling police officer ‘Sweaty’ Eddie Souter and to the self doubt and sould searching of the Mother Superior. Each character is portrayed not only by the excellent acting but also by the superb lyrics of their individual life-songs in such a way as to build a whole much greater tha the sum of its parts.
The totally comic twist of the villain of the piece, Curtis Jackson, singing the words ‘I’m gonna kill that girl’ to what sounds to all intents and purposes to be a 1970’s motown classic that could have been sung by James Brown is comic genius at its best, and reminds us that this was never intended to take itself seriously. This is a fantastic musical comedy that provides for an evening of entertainment well worth the cost of the ticket.