Stephen / Tony Forte - Daniel Ferrett
Samantha / Lola La Mar - Jo Gregory
Rico Castelli - Adrian Jones
Conchita Alvarez - Natalie Angell-Collins
Gladys Murphy - Glenda Thomas
Sam Silver - Dave Smith
This was a lively, colourful show and it was a pleasure to watch it from start to finish.
As the story unfolded Stephen (Daniel Ferrett) was joined by lovely Lola (Jo Gregory), the wicked Rico (Adrian Jones), the glamorous Conchita (Natalie Angell-Collins), the very street-wise Gladys (Glenda Thomas), good old Sam (Dave Smith), and Tony, Stephen’s alter ego.
All the principals sang and danced well and the standard of acting was high. Lola was a lovely mix of innocence and enthusiasm and Jo brought a lot of humour to the role. Rico was a suitably evil mobster and the Bolero was a delight. Conchita was a very fiery lady and Natalie brought a bit of depth to her character. Gladys was very funny, with some very good, well-delivered lines and she was an excellent foil for the slightly aggressive Sam, who is really an old softy.
Daniel Ferrett was brilliant as Tony, singing so well in the night club scenes (I loved “Sweet Heaven”) but he was also convincing as Stephen, and the final scene meeting the parents was quite funny and very well played by all.
The chorus was very stylish and confident right from the very beginning as they joined Stephen as he worked on the “Copacabana” lyrics. The dancing was, as usual for SMS, excellent, with well thought out choreography, and the many costumes were bright and well fitting.
The orchestra played well throughout but at times was a little too strident, drowning out the lyrics.
The set was a brilliant example of “less is more” with the simple staging quickly being adapted to the many scenes. The action was never allowed to flag as the cast effortlessly dressed the set.
John Earwood, the director, and his cast and crew get full marks for this super production.