Dreamgirls UK Tour Review

You know a show is something quite special when its starring actor receives a standing ovation before the interval. And that's exactly what happened tonight at the Mayflower Theatre, Southampton as the Dreamgirls UK tour took to the stage. 

Though a work of fiction, Dreamgirls introduces you to some formidable, headstrong women who help pave the way for black women in music. It gives nods to the greats before them including Diana Ross, Mary Wells, and Mable John through show stopping songs and performances that will leave you with your jaw on the floor. Fully of costumes covered in sparkles, Dreamgirls is a dazzling show that will leave you rising from your seat as they take their final bow. 


The show itself takes you through the highs and lows of making a career in the limelight. You are introduced to three budding young performers who dream of making it big. Lorelle (played by Paige Peddie) is the baby of the group, the naive youngster who falls hopelessly in love with the big named, enigmatic star Jimmy Early (Brandon Lee Sears). Deena (played by Natalie Kassanga) is the softly spoken, traditionally beautiful singer who is thrust into the limelight whilst Effie White (Played by Nicole Raquel Dennis) is the ambitious and remarkable front woman we all need in our lives. All three women battle their own adversities across the show, culminating in a farewell tour of grand proportions after finding what makes them truly happy. 

One thing this this show is not short of is show stoppers, and I can honestly say that from the staging, to the costumes, and songs, this show truly ticks all the boxes. It truly felt like you had been transported to the 60's for a few hours and left you with a smile on your face (after you had sobbed all your makeup off first!). With the odd moment where the fourth wall was broken, you were immersed from the opening bars, to the closing number. 

I absolutely adored Brandon Lee Sears' performance as Jimmy Early, the sex obsessed king of the charts. His rise and fall to fame was both hilarious and heart breaking, and it showed you just how fragile life in the public eye can be. Matt Mills impressed me as Curtis Taylor Jr, the car salesman turned band manager that cut corners, shafted others and did whatever he could to rise to the top. But as mentioned earlier, not many actors I know have received a standing ovation mid-way through the show, but Nicole Raquel Dennis' performance was nothing short of incredible. Their stage presence, powerful voice, pure electric emotion, and pitch perfect rendition of "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" proved that they were the indisputable star of the show. 

Dreamgirls is a showstopper of a musical. With big songs, bigger costumes and the biggest voices around, it's a memorable show for everyone that goes to watch it. I am telling you it's one that you will adore from start to finish and leave humming the songs to yourself whilst reminding yourself that fame and fortune comes with a price, but family ultimately comes first. 

Dreamgirls is showing at the Mayflower Theatre, Southampton until 19th November and there are limited tickets available. More information can be found here: Dreamgirls - Mayflower. The show will then continue on a UK tour. 

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