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Flashdance The Musical at Milton Keynes Theatre

Published by: Alison Smith on 17th Jul 2018 | View all blogs by Alison Smith


Flashdance at Milton Keynes Theatre

Flashdance the Musical is the stage adaption of the film Flashdance by Tom Hedley and Robert Cary with music composed by Robbie Roth and  lyrics by Cary and Roth. Flashdance is the feel-good musical par excellence – the girl from hard circumstances achieves all she wishes – the career, the man, and one supposes happiness.  Alex Owens, a welder by day, dances in Harry’s Bar in the evenings. Her dream is to be a dancer; to do so she wants to enrol in the prestigious Shipley Dance Academy.  But Alex is filled with self- doubt, she is after all a manual worker. It is only after the death of her mentor, Hannah (Carol Ball) and an unwelcome intervention by boyfriend Nick (Ben Adams) that Alex goes to the final audition and wins a place.

Yet Alex’s success is highlighted by the failure of others – Gloria, who becomes a stripper addicted to booze and drugs, and Jimmy, who fails to make it as a comic in NY.  How does Alex do it? Through guts and determination, by being beautiful and compassionate. And who better to portray such a girl than Joanna Clifton, a living dynamo who can move at 200 km an hour and can sing? Joanna is accompanied by Ben Adams, a talented singer who showed some good, if restrained, dance moves, and a wonderful cast with great choreography (Matt Cole). The athleticism of the ensemble is remarkable; their energy and precision never wavers and in the audience participating finale to What a Feeling they demonstrated some extraordinary movements. The singing is also first-rate. There are twenty –six musical numbers including Maniac ,I love Rock and Roll and Gloria all performed with excellent vocals.

There were some negatives to the performance however. The set – although fitting for the industrial scenes - is large and cumbersome, and makes the stage area small. The cast spent much time in semi-darkness moving the set – especially the two unwieldy flights of stairs. It is also a shame that the very gifted band (George Carter musical director) is hidden away.

Flashdance  is performed by accomplished dancers and singers. The story is fairly stereotypical and trite, but the interpretation of the story by the cast cannot be falted.

 Flashdance the Musical is at Milton Keynes Theatre until Saturday 21st July

0844 877 7652

Booking fee applies




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