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Tonight's The Night at King's Theatre, Glasgow 

Published by: Cameron Lowe on 3rd Jun 2014 | View all blogs by Cameron Lowe
Ben Elton and Rod Stewart form an unlikely collaboration to produce a rockin' comedy musical that unashamedly entertains and features over 20 of Rod's greatest hits.
 
Tonight's the Night

Running like something of a cross between "Jekyll and Hyde" and 50s classic musical "Damn Yankees" the story follows young Stuart (Ben Heathcote); a painfully shy garage attendant in present day Detroit.  Stuart is desperately in love with Mary (Jenna Lee-James) and makes a deal with the Devil (Tiffany Graves) to trade his soul for that of his idol Rod Stewart - after all, Rod was never shy with the ladies!  However, as is the way with Satan, all does not work out as promised and Stuart is torn between his sweet likeable self and the unfaithful, irresponsible babe-magnet that he perceives Rod Stewart to be.  His rock and roll lifestyle has the effect of disillusioning his friends but they eventually rally round to try to snap him out of whatever has changed his character.
 
Ben Heathcote was outstanding in this leading role.  His voice had that great ‘Rod Stewart' gravelly rock quality and his overwhelming character marked this young man out as a star of the future.  Jenna Lee-James gave a sympathetic performance as Mary and her rich voice had character and power.  Rosie Heath excelled as Dee Dee delivering a pure country soprano which had the audience holding their breath!  Tiffany Graves, reprising her role as Satan / Baby Jane, blew the audience away with raw power and a wicked soul.  And yet, with all this talent on stage, Ricky Rojas still managed to steal every scene he was in as the irrepressible - and aptly named - Stoner.
 
The production design was worth a mention as the band took centre stage on a purpose built mezzanine to deliver more than 20 Rod Stewart classics including Maggie May, Baby Jane, Hot Legs, Do Ya Think I'm Sexy and Sailing.  Lighting, too, was excellent with several effects bringing the audience into the action.  
 
Unfortunately, for a fuddy duddy theatre lover like me, the over eager audience sang over the top of a beautifully rendered solo "I Don't Want To Talk About It" by Andy Rees as Rocky.  All was forgiven, though, when, at the end of the show, I joined over 2,000 Glaswegians wearing white sailor's "pork pie" hats (issued by theatre staff) and waved my arms in the air singing "Sailing" at the top of my lungs.  It's a tough job ….
 
King's Theatre Glasgow
Mon 2 - Sat 14 Jun 2014
Mon - Sat eves 7.30pm
Wed & Sat mats 2.30pm
Box Office 0844 871 7648 (bkg fee)
www.atgtickets.com/glasgow (bkg fee)

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