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The Blue Brothers at The Hippodrome Casino until 26th August
Review By Caroline Hanks-Farmer
The Blues Brothers was originally devised by Dan Ayckroyd and John Belushi in 1978 as a sketch show for Saturday Night Live. They rapidly secured a cult following, bringing blues to a new generation of music loving audiences.
Its concept was always set up so that musicians could drop in and out of the band and so when John Belushi died in 1982 The Blues Brothers were able to continue. Thankfully for us with additional material from Belushi’s widow and Dan Ayckroyd we are able to see a new production which has a summer residency at The Hippodrome Casino until 26th August.
Directed by Joshua Mumby and choreographed by Lily Howkins this two-hour fun-filled show has the audience on its feet and yelling for more – we just couldn’t get enough of Joshua Mumby and David Kristopher-Brown as Elwood and Jake Blues!
With 33 numbers in the show including some of my personal favourites – Gimme Some Lovin’ , Shake A Tailfeather, Under The Boardwalk, (Sittin’ On) The Dock Of The Bay, Tequila, Wipe Out, Respect, Minnie The Moocher, Do you Love Me, Let The Sunshine In, Dancing In The Street and Flip, Flop And Fly. Actually thinking about it, there really wasn’t one song I didn’t like within the extensive song list.
Accompanied by the immense vocal talents and stage presence of Helen Hart and Hannah Kee as the Stax Sisters. Along with the simply awesome Arnold Mabhena as Ray, this show is a fast paced appreciation of some of the finest music ever created. Fabulous, sometimes cheesy (the sombreros for Tequila spring to mind), costumes and brilliant well-executed choreography add to the experience.
However it is the likeness and background work that has clearly been undertaken by both Mumby and Kristopher-Brown to attain an authentic performance. Their mannerisms and persona identical to the original Blues Brothers at times, were an absolute joy to experience.
The live band brilliantly musically directed by James Robert Ball, who thoroughly entered into the whole spirit of the party atmosphere and added even more fun (if that’s possible) to the evening. Performed in the inconic, and intimate setting of The Hippodrome Casino, this really is the most perfect venue for this type of a rockin’ feel-good show.
Supercharged, super fun, adrenaline fuelled – This show is simply not to be missed! So Let The Sunshine In and Shake ‘your’ Tailfeather down to the Hippodrome Casino to see The Blues Brothers. You’ll be Dancing In The Street in no time!