The first review of the musical starring H from Steps and her from Two Packets of Lager… It doesn’t get much more glittering than this.
The leg-warmer budget may have been through the roof, but what they frittered away on lo-slung sweats and belly Ts, they certainly saved on talented dancers and singers. Welcome to the show that’s like looking through the window of the Pineapple Dance Studio. In a bad way.
Fame opened (yes, again) in London’s glittering West End last night featuring the dizzying talents of Ian ‘H’ Watkins (of Steps and Celeb Big Brother fame) and Natalie Casey, last seen on Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps… But the biggest disappointment was that it’s not even based on the film! And they don’t even sing ‘Fame: I’m gonna live forever, I’m gonna learn how to fly (altogether now) HIGH!’ all the way through (though, to be fair, during the required final standing ovation, they do drive a car on stage)…
Without any real story to slow it down, Fame recounts the experiences of some people who go to the New York School of Performing Arts. People dance on cafeteria tables (those dinner ladies must be sooo over it by now), some people die through taking too many drugs even though they really had a ‘dream’ and the word ‘dream’ is used about 17, 500 times. Oh, and every song repeats the title throughout the whole song. Ad infinitum. So if it’s called ‘These are my children’ (as one indeed is… so that’ll give you an idea) it goes something like, ‘These are my children… these are my children… these are my children… these are my – you get the message’).
Stand-out performances come from Fem Belling as a fatty who decides to become a ‘character actor’ so she can carry on eating Doritos (live on stage!) and Jacqui Dubois (‘These are my children…’ even though they’re not). As for ‘H’ and Natalie: they’re OK, even though her character does make a snidey gay comment at one point. Hello! To H! And to a room and a cast full of gays. We don’t think so, missus.
Fun fact: Steve Margoshes is, apparently, ‘very happy’ to have composed the score to the sequel FAME FOREVER, which had its World Premiere (capital LETTERS everyone) in, erm, Glasgow last week.