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re: Number 7

Posted by:
daveake 09:55 am MST 03/15/17
In reply to: Number 7 - Jacqueline 09:29 am MST 03/15/17

& down 993 to go before Jim finally realises that he and everyone else involved have produced a masterpiece. :-)

> http://ilovemanchester.com/2017/03/15/review-bat-out-of-hell-the-musical-hits-all-the-right-notes.aspx
> Review: Bat Out of Hell The Musical hits all the right
> notes at Opera House
> I was nearly hit in the heart by a missile during this
> show - and that's not the only explosive thing about Bat
> Out Of Hell The Musical
> Meatloaf’s Bat Out Of Hell has sold more than 43 million
> so far and still shifts more than 200,000 copies annually.
> So how do you turn one of the biggest selling albums of
> all time into a musical? With motorbikes, real fire and
> one of the most elaborate sets I’ve ever seen, that’s
> how.
> Bat Out Of Hell The Musical brought it all on opening
> night at The Opera House last night. Written by Jim
> Steinman, the producer of the original record which was
> inspired by Meatloaf’s love of Bruce Springsteen and
> Wagner, it certainly is an ambitious undertaking. And all
> eyes were on Manchester where the show premiered before
> heading to London.
> The musical manages to follow the story behind the 1977
> concept album, making it accessible to people who may
> never have heard the songs before. It’s a tale of teenage
> angst turned epic, following Strat (Andrew Polec) and his
> group of bike-toting rockers, as he falls in love with
> Raven (Christina Bennington), an 18-year old girl trapped
> in an American nightmare of obsessive parents and excess.
> It sounds simple but the ambitious set works to magnify
> every emotion going. A built-in escalator, cavernous
> tunnel, a suspended room and mounted cameras beam this
> multi-level activity onto a big screen recreating the
> claustrophobia and crush of teenage surburbia so well.
> The set, designed by Jon Bausor, who has worked on many
> large-scale productions before including Bugsy Malone, was
> months in the making and it shows. I have never seen
> anything like it.  An elaborate construction of the
> American dream gone grotesquely wrong – and to great
> effect.
> It would easy for the story to stay focused largely around
> the rebellious Strat and his sense of having no one,
> especially as the energetic Andrew Polec engages utterly
> with the role.  Strat hovers from bold biker to tender
> lover but rather than mimic Meatloaf, Polec brings his own
> dynamism to the character, embracing the free spirit of
> the music.
> The show is all about breaking boundaries and enjoying
> sweet release and, thanks to an energetic cast and the
> enigmatic Raven, the music manages to weave into a number
> of subplots. Dance helps to drive it forward, a
> significant achievement by Emma Portner, the youngest
> woman in history to have choreographed a musical.
> Comedy is interlaced with contemporary comment on marriage
> in the relationship between Raven’s parents Falco (Rob
> Fowler) and Sloane (Sharon Sexton) using the well known
> track Paradise By The Dashboard Light to explore their
> passionate past.  Performed as a sensuous duet which
> involves a striptease, a parked car and running
> commentary, it reveals a great rapport between the
> actors.
> Yes, there is cheese, but it’s well rounded. Think a whole
> Stilton rather than a slice of own brand Cheddar.
> The first half of the show contains many memorable songs –
> classic after classic. All Revved Up And No  Place To
> Go, Wasted Youthand Who Needs the Young? are all in there
> backed by a live band.
> But is it a case of too much, too soon? Well perhaps it is
> but rightly so. Meatloaf’s album was considered ahead of
> its time for its exploration of fame, excess and
> controversy, so magnifying this in musical form brings
> back the sense of scandal which originally accompanied the
> tracks.
> It’s alluringly naughty and hits you hard. A car falls
> into the orchestra, inches from the sears, with band
> members getting on stage  to wave their mangled
> instruments – an excellent piece of comic timing.
> Party poppers are also fired into the crowd (one hit my
> shoulder) as part of Raven’s eighteenth birthday
> celebrations, and members of the audience were covered in
> silly string, glitter and streamers during the course of
> the night. And then there was blood.
> Yes, that’s right, blood. The first half ends with a
> passionate, powerful rendition of the title track Bat Out
> Of Hell, showcasing both Polec and Bennington as highly
> capable vocalists as well as actors. It would have been
> wrong for the interval to be preceded by any other song,
> and it certainly was an immersive experience with jets of
> flame, showers of confetti and blood dripping from Strat’s
> front.
> The first half went out on such a high I was left
> wondering how the second part could live up to it. But it
> did, picking up on some of the sub-plots from the first
> half, including the intense relationship between Zahara
> (Danielle Steers) and Jagwire (Dom Hartley-Harris) and, of
> course, the loveable Tink (Aran MacRae).
> Steinman has managed to craft a musical not ashamed of of
> its melodrama and capable of portraying characters with
> whom we can empathise.
> The tracks It’s All Coming Back To Me Now and I Would Do
> Anything  For Love make for an intense finale.
> I left feeling satisfied. This is a musical that hits all
> the right notes.
> Bat Out Of Hell The Musical is at The Opera House until
> 18th April
> Sent from AOL Mobile Mail

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