WISH Theatre Trip: Hairspray at Liverpool Empire

Our most recent theatre trip was to see Hairspray at The Liverpool Empire. One of our members, Sarah has kindly written us a brilliant review of the night. Over to you, Sarah:

The trip to the Empire Theatre to see Hairspray was a nice evening out. I had seen bits of the film years ago so had an idea what the story was. Basically it’s set in 1962 hence the big hair and the need for lots of hairspray!

The main character is teenager, Tracy Turnblad who is pleasantly plump, is friendly with everyone, regardless of the colour of their skin, and she also loves to dance! She and her friend Penny Pingleton rush home from school every day to watch their favourite TV programme, the Corny Collins Show, which has an ‘all white’ cast.

The girls find out that there are going to be auditions for the chance to dance on the show so Tracy goes along. Not only does her fab dancing attract Corny Collins, but also the attention of teenage heart throb, Link Larkin. But not everyone is happy with the decision to have her dance on the show as she doesn’t have the same skinny figure as the rest of the dancers.

The shows manager, Velma von Tussle, played by Lucy Benjamin who is really good in this, will do anything to get Tracy off the show. Over the course of the two acts, Tracy and her friends triumph! Not only does Tracy get to be the main dancer on the show but her black friends get to dance too. Link Larkin also falls in love with Tracy so it’s a predictably happy ending!

The first act was a little slow for me but I thoroughly enjoyed the second act which had more action and better songs. The actress who played Tracy really did a great job portraying the character and she had a great voice. The actress who played Motormouth Maybelle had the most incredible voice and could really belt out a song, in particular “Big, Blonde & Beautiful”.

Without question though, the star of the show was Marcus Collins who played ‘Seaweed’, one of Tracy’s cool friends who could certainly ‘bust some moves’! He gave a fantastic performance both vocally and visually with his energetic dancing and jumping around. The whole cast got a standing ovation at the end.

So, all in all, a lovely evening out to watch a cheesy but enjoyable show. It wasn’t my favourite show of all those I’ve seen but it had the ‘feel good’ factor and left you with a smile!

Thanks Sarah – What a fabulous write up!

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