Viva Forever! The Piccadilly Theatre, Review
Admittedly I was fairly dubious about last night’s theatre visit after having drudged through several reviews that deemed Saunders’ Spice sensation musical a massive flop. I felt I’d let the side down, as being the family thespian it is always my duty to pick a show. However, last night proved that you shouldn’t always listen to the advice of pompous critics, as after all … musical theatre is subjective.
Being a 21-year-old Essex bred student it is safe to say that I am of the Spice generation… and this show was exactly my cup of tea. Who wouldn’t enjoy dancing in the aisles, singing along to your favourite Spice hits whilst necking a glass of wine with the girls? I mean, the plot isn’t exactly going to win a Laurence Olivier award for its imagination as it’s about an adopted wannabe singer who enters a TV talent competition in the hope of achieving fame. But then again the Spice Girls would never have won a Grammy for their spine-chilling vocals.
Jennifer certainly doesn’t disappoint with the humour. The show was jam-packed with jokes which had the audience laughing out loud. There were even some nice characters in there such as Minty, the ‘Made in Chelsea’ style annoyingly posh Television Assistant on ‘Star Maker’. My only real criticism is that the story never really gets resolved at the end. I felt as if the show had paused half way through, right in the middle of the drama and I was craving a heart-wrenching resolution.
At the end of the day, if you’re a Les Mis fan who is looking for a tear-jerking musical with Oscar winning performances then this most definitely isn’t for you as the singing is fairly average in contrast to the standard of the West End. But if you’re looking for a night out where you can sing along and have a cracking time then this is definitely to you. I even drunk tweeted Jennifer herself with glee as I left the theatre whilst shout-singing ‘2 become 1’ with my cousin. I wrote: “VIVA Viva Forever! Even had my frumpy mum dancing in the aisles!…”.
Rumour has it Jennifer is doing a re-write for the show, but that really isn’t necessary. ‘Mamma Mia’ is one of the cheesiest musicals out there yet we all secretly love it. ‘Viva Forever’ just needs time to settle in to the scenery of the West End and be accepted for what it truly is.