BWW Review: THE BAND, King's Theatre, Glasgow

BWW Review: THE BAND, King's Theatre, Glasgow

BWW Review: THE BAND, King's Theatre, Glasgow

The Band is a new musical written by Tim Firth and based on the songs of Take That. In 2017 BBC's Let It Shine auditioned young men to become the band in the musical and AJ, Curtis, Sario, Nick and Yazdan obtained the coveted roles.

The cynic in me who figured that this was just another jukebox musical disappeared approximately thirty seconds into the show. It's 1992, it's 7pm and it's time for Top Of The Pops! Rachel is sixteen years old and feels as though her favourite band are in her bedroom. Singing into her hairbrush, the music drowns out the sound of her parents arguing and it is one of the many reasons she loves "the boys". As soon as they burst onstage and into the opening lines of "Pray" I was hooked!

Most of Act One features the girls as teenagers, talking about their dreams for the future and their shared love of their favourite boy band. The script is very clever and witty and perfectly captures how important a band can be when you're growing up.

Fast forward twenty five years and the girls are no longer in touch. Rachel enters a competition to win tickets to see the boys (although we know which band the show is based on they are never named) on their reunion tour and decides to get the gang back together for the trip.

After seeing the girls as teenagers and hearing their plans for the future, you quickly become invested in their stories and how they turned out. With the performance running at just under two hours it is a testament to the excellent storytelling that they have managed to write such well developed characters that you genuinely care about.

One of the many highlights of the show is Andy Williams as Every Dave. Williams plays deadpan bus drivers, concert roadies, a Polish policeman and pretty much every other bit part needed. What was mildly amusing at the beginning of the performance became hilarious as he continued to pop up in every scene under a different guise.

The band are very much a background to the story and the music compliments whatever is happening between the girls at the time. The production really shines (sorry) during the live performances- particularly "Relight My Fire" where the staging brings an arena-worthy performance to the King's Theatre.

The Band is a rollercoaster ride of nostalgia and utter joy. I found the plot to be completely unpredictable and full of clever twists. While the show is sold on the name of Take That this isn't a musical about a boy band. It is a musical about the importance and strength of female friendships which is beautifully told, inclusive and will almost certainly make you cry.

The Band is at the King's Theatre, Glasgow until Saturday 7th July.

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From This Author Natalie O'Donoghue

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