Review Roundup: West End's SINGIN' IN THE RAIN
Following its critically acclaimed, sell-out run at Chichester Festival Theatre, Jonathan Church's new production of Singin' in the Rain opened last night, February 15 at the Palace Theatre. Church's production of Singin' in the Rain, with choreography by Andrew Wright, is based on the classic 1952 MGM film and is produced in the West End by Stage Entertainment UK and Chichester Festival Theatre.
The West End cast is led by Adam Cooper as Don Lockwood, Daniel Crossley as CosMo Brown, Scarlett Strallen as Kathy Seldon and Katherine Kingsley as Lina Lamont, with Michael Brandon as RF Simpson and Sandra Dickinson as Dora Bailey/Miss Dinsmore, all of whom will reprise their roles from the original Chichester production.
Charles Spencer, Telegraph: This stage version of Singin’ in the Rain was terrific when it opened during a torrential downpour in Chichester last summer. And it is even better now on its transfer to the West End, the perfect, potent pick-me-up in these apparently interminable grey days of anxiety and gloom.
Henry Hitchings, Evening Standard: Adam Cooper is likeable as Lockwood, with fantastic dance skills. There's engaging work from Daniel Crossley as pal Cosmo. Katherine Kingsley has an irresistible comic touch as Lina, and Scarlett Strallen radiates warmth as Kathy. There are neat performances in supporting roles notably Michael Brandon as a studio boss, elegant design by Simon Higlett and ingenious video by Ian William Galloway, which draws some of the biggest laughs.
Paul Taylor, Independent: I missed it at the time, alas, though I yield to no one in my admiration for the Festival Theatre's amazing recent track record with musicals including Stephen Mear's enchantingly witty and brilliantly choreographed chamber-staging in Minerva Studio last spring of She Loves Me, the cult favourite by the authors of Fiddler on the Roof which, in any just world, would also have transferred to London.
Dominic Maxwell, Times: This is not a flawless adaptation — a sprawling first half needs more vim in its spoken moments, and the central trio of Adam Cooper, Scarlett Strallen and Daniel Crossley can’t challenge the charm of Gene Kelly, Debbie Reynolds and Donald O’Connor
Patrick Marmion, Daily Mail: It was an unusually feverish first night for the stage version of the 1952 movie yesterday. And nobody, but nobody was going to rain on this parade. If they did there would certainly only be two outcomes: much singing and dancing. Jonathan Church’s production was a huge hit in Chichester last year and it’s looking as good as ever.
Michael Coveney, Whatsonstage: The rain at the end of each act is tremendous, and anyone in the most expensive seats in the front few rows gets a marvellous soaking. But the highlight of Simon Higlett’s superb design and Tim Mitchell’s lighting is the irresistible explosion of pastel suits, flashing legs and Manhattan skyline in “Broadway Melody.”
Photo Credit: Manuel Harlan