Review Roundup: What Did Critics Think of BRING IT ON at State Theatre?
It's all happening at Sydney's State Theatre! Bring It On, the musical adapted from the film of the same name, recently opened at State Theatre. Read what the critics had to say!
Sprinkled with sass and inspired by the hit film, Bring It On The Musical is a hilarious, universal story that is sure to be everything you hope for and nothing like you expect.
Uniting some of the freshest and funniest creative minds on Broadway, BRING IT ON THE MUSICAL features an original story by Tony Award winner, Jeff Whitty (Avenue Q), music and lyrics by Tony Award-winning composer, Lin-Manuel Miranda (In the Heights, Hamilton), music by Pulitzer- and Tony Award-winning composer, Tom Kitt (Next to Normal), lyrics by Broadway lyricist, Amanda Green (High Fidelity), and was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Musical.
Campbell is cheer-royalty at Truman High School and her senior year should prove the most cheertastic - she's been named captain of the squad! But, an unexpected redistricting has forced her to spend her final year of high school at the neighbouring hard-knock Jackson High School. Despite having the deck stacked against her, Campbell befriends the dance crew girls and, along with their headstrong and hardworking leader, Danielle, manages to form a powerhouse squad for the ultimate competition - the National Championships.
Read what the critics said below!
Alana Kaye, Theatre Now: As Campbell, cheerleading star from the posh and preppy Truman High, Kirby Burgess turns out a stellar performance. She has immense star quality, and is reminiscent of Anna Kendrick with her comedy skills, storytelling ability and powerhouse vocals. Playing Danielle, Campbell's rival from the school in the dodgy end of town, is newcomer Jasmine Smith. This is Smith's first professional leading role, and while she brings a whole load of sass to Danielle, it's evident she needs to keep working on her stamina. Smith's dancing is fab, but her vocals suffered after big physical numbers.
Rebecca Varidel, The Next Rush Magazine: From the onset, the audience is pulled into a vortex of maximum intensity in a visual spectacular choreographed by Michael Ralph. The dance canvas of the cheerleading backdrop allows a creative fusing of dance - contemporary, jazz, hip-hop with flickers of ballroom, interlaced with great feats of gymnastics and parkour-like showmanship. In terms of story progression, it is a little overdone but the ensemble's level of energy and precision maintained throughout much of the first act keeps you buying in to it with roars and cheers emanating from the crowd.
Angus McPherson, Limelight: Fluid direction by Alister Smith and the upbeat score keeps the energy pumping. There are splashes of In the Heights in the second act's opening ensemble number It's All Happening but overall the music - like most elements of this show - is primarily a medium for the dancing. The ballads, for instance, are weaker, and poor sound plagued opening night, particularly obscuring some of the lyrics so vital to making the hip hop sequences really pop.