42nd Street UK Tour Review

 Sometimes all you need is good old glitz and glamour to bring joy to your evening. And stepping onto 42nd Street at the Mayflower Theatre, is sure to put a smile on your face and a spring in your step. 

Based on the 1932 novel by Bradford Ropes and the subsequent 1933 Hollywood film adaptation, this backstage musical follows the rehearsal process of a Broadway show staged during the height of the Great Depression in New York. It follows a group of hungry performers who are eager to get onto stage in a brand new musical and the ups and downs they face along the way. 

You are introduced to Peggy Sawyer, a young, naive performer who is hopeful to be cast in her first show. As she meets the rest of the cast, including show stopper Dorothy Brock, she must make a good, lasting impression and hope that she doesn’t ruin her chances. But with misfortune around each corner, her luck feels like it’s running out before curtains up. 

Jan packed full of songs that will have you soaring in your seat, you can’t help but be swept away in the fantasy of these backstage antics. Learning about each characters hopes, dreams, and secrets you eagerly sit on the edge of your seat as you hope that this production is nothing but spectacular. 

Samantha Womack takes the role of Brock and plays the cynical yet frankly exhausted actress in such a brilliant and hilarious way. I also loved Faye Tozer as Maggie Jones, the writer-come-comedic performer in the show. I never knew how fantastic she was at  acting, but I can’t wait to see her in something else now! Sam Lips was utterly sublime as Billy Lawlor, the Tenor who tries to win the heart of the leading lady. But our star of the show was Nicole-Lily Baisden as the phenomenal Peggy Sawyer. Her tenacity on stage just lit the place up and you couldn’t take your eyes of her throughout the whole performance. 

The dancing, especially the tap is absolutely divine. Going with someone that adores dance meant that every now and again I could glimpse over and see the awe and amazement in their eyes as they watched the dancers perfect every step on stage. Its amazing to see the stamina and teamwork that comes with working in such an intense show as 42nd Street, and watching the smiles and subtle laughs and interactions on stage showed the audience how much chemistry they have together. 

With costumes that dazzled as much as the lighting and staging, you can’t deny that this is a showstopper of a musical. Each song, character, performer, and musician makes this a show that you will not forget in a hurry. The timeless nature of this show means that audience members young and old can find the magic within every step. Everyone left the theatre with a spring in their step talking about dancing and even trying out the steps themselves on their journeys home. 42nd Street is one of those shows that ticks every box and I can’t wait to see it again. 

42nd Street is on at the Mayflower Theatre, Southampton until 7th October before continuing on a UK Tour. 

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