Recently, I was offered tickets to see a production of the musical Anything Goes by the Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts. It's part of their spring season of performances and one of the final shows of their third year students.
|The production poster had me tempted before I even |
read the synopsis...
I didn't know anything about the play until I got the invite - I didn't even know the title song, which surprised a few people - but was immediately interested when I read the description. It's based on a story by P.G. Wodehouse - whom, as I discovered last year, I rather enjoy - and the music is by Cole Porter. So The Cat and I headed along to northeast London last Tuesday night for the performance.
And you know what? It was excellent! I figured that, given the students would have been training and learning the art of theatre performance for the last three years, and were set to soon be released into the big bad world of professional theatre, that it would be of at least decent quality. But both The Cat and I were super impressed. Those kids (I'm allowed to call them that, being not so far off 30...) had some great voices, amazing energy and fabulous dance moves. Sure, the sets weren't as sparkly and shiny as you might get on a West End production but does that really matter when the cast's performances are so stellar?
|The cast of Anything Goes in action|
So, we were chuckling away, tapping our feet all the way through, nudging each other when one of the characters started singing I Get a Kick Out of You (having one of those 'so that's where the song's from' revelation moments) and humming Anything Goes all the way home. I may not have known the song before but it's so instantly catchy and fun that it immediately lodged itself in my brain.
Mountview are also doing a production of Guys and Dolls over the next few weeks, and I'm almost tempted to head back out there for that... Either way, going to see their show certainly reminded me of one of the great alternatives to West End theatre. I'll definitely be keeping an eye on them for future productions and looking up other reputable theatre schools.
And, in the spirit of the glamorous cruise ship setting of the show, I will leave you with some wonderful pictures of real cruise ship passengers of old...