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Mary Poppins

Published by: GRAHAM CLARK on 6th Nov 2016 | View all blogs by GRAHAM CLARK



MARY POPPINS, THE ALHAMBRA, BRADFORD

If like me you thought that the Mary Poppins musical was just for children, then think again. This extravagant and feel good show will appeal to all ages. It felt just like walking out of seeng a top West End production after leaving the theatre. From the orchestra to the actors to the special effects everything is top class in this spellbinding production.

It would be easy to compare this production to the film version but although the story is still the same and set back in the 19th century, this version with its high quality special effects is definitely of the 21st century.

Zizi Strallen as Mary Poppins reminded me a little of Bonny Langford with her facial expressions, it we only later that I discovered that she is in fact, Langford's niece. She plays the role with a youthful charm.

Matt Lee as Bert was cheeky and charming, he even walks completely around the side of the stage, across it and down the other side at one point! He is a good dancer too bad the tap dance sequence was one of the many highlights for me,


The two children are magnificently played by Violet Tucker as Jane Banks and Finley Milleras Michael Banks would put many an older actor to shame.  Neil Roberts as George Banks might be slimmer than the version played in the film but his performance was so powerful that it did not detract from it. Rebecca Lock as Winifred Lock played the past with the understanding of that of a long suffering mother. It's a name she did not get to wear another costume in this colourful production.

The songs such as A Spoonful of Sugar, Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious and Chim Chim Cher-ee are just as part of the show as the actors. As some of the songs are repeated throughout the night you find yourself singing them well after you have left the theatre!

Many of the sequences are so extravagant  they seem like a finale such is their breathtaking spectacle. Colourful and cheerful it defiantly is an antidote for any winter blues.

Behind all the magic that Mary Poppins produces as the likeable nanny there is a deeper meaning in the story with that of rejection: George Banks rejects his children by letting a nanny look after them, whilst he himself gets rejected as one of his banking deals goes wrong and he is suspended form his job. Of course there is a happy ending as he gets his job back and the family become a happy unit again.

I won't spoil it by telling you how Mary Poppins leaves when her services are no longer required but let's just say, whether you sit in the stalls or the dress circle you will enjoy it.

A brilliant version of this popular musical that will appeal to all ages. To quote one of the songs sung during the night: the show is Practically Perfect!

Runs until Saturday 10 December 2016

Tickets from: www.bradford-theatres.co.uk

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