Tag Archives: Gina Beck

A Night For Jennifer, Lyric Theatre

1 Nov

A Night For Jennifer was a special gala concert in support of the Jennifer Charity. The Jennifer Charity was set up by James and Graham Edgington and supports widowed fathers and their children. You can find more about the charity here.

This one-off concert was produced by Chris Macklin and had a very impressive line-up, including some of the best performers in the West End as well as some up-and-coming talent.

I enjoyed the evening very much, though there were some performances I didn’t really like. But considering the diversity of them I think that was only natural.

Given the amount of talent involved in the concert I find it hard to single some of them out, but here we go.

I really enjoyed the Les Misérables songs, ‘On My Own’ (Sabrina Aloueche) and ‘A Heart Full of Love’ (Sabrina Aloueche, Gina Beck and Joseph Connor).

Joseph Connor

Joseph Connor’s ‘You and Me (But Mostly Me)’ from Book of Mormon was great. I’m a huge fan of the musical and loved seeing a song from it performed live (and so well!). Unfortunately I didn’t catch the name of the second performer.

Hearing Rosalind James sing ‘Daddy’s Song’ (from Ragtime) again was wonderful. I loved it when it was on at the Landor. She has a unique voice.

I also liked Chloe Hart’s ‘Never Neverland’, the Bloomfield Avenue and Woman sections, Jeremy Legat’s ‘Could I Leave You’, Stephen Oliver-Webb and the Jennifer Choir.

Some performances completely stood-out for me though:

Chris Passey

The three songs from Chris Passey’s upcoming album. Chloe Hart’s ‘Worthy’ was incredible, as was ‘Self Taught, Still Learning’, which was sung by Nadine Cox  and the quartet (‘You Were Mine’) sung by Gina Beck, Jeremy Legat, Chloe Hart and Chris Passey himself. His songs are very melodic with beautiful lyrics. His album Self Taught, Still Learning is released on the 15th November and judging by those three songs it’s going to be a treat!

Steven Webb’s ‘How Do You Know ‘Til You Try Me’ from Betwixt. I’ve seen him in a couple of things in the past 12 months, but his stage presence never fails to amaze me. Wonderful performance.

Danny Lane

Being Alive was sung by Danny Lane. I thought his performance was breath taking. His voice just blew me away and he nailed that song (which is one of my favourite MT songs). Definitely one to watch out for!

I really liked the Jennifer Choir, but for me there were two performers who stood out and completely stole the Finale (Never Forget): Ziggie Sky Ward and Ben Vivian-Jones. Both have incredibly strong voices. Another two to watch out for in the future!

Special mention goes to James and Graham Edgington, without whom this concert would never have happened.

It was a very enjoyable evening, thanks to the hard work by everyone involved, so a big Thank You to them and I hope they managed to raise a lot of money for the Jennifer Charity!

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The Belle’s Stratagem, Southwark Playhouse

29 Sep

The Belle’s Stratagem is a play by Hannah Cowley from 1780. Despite its initial success, it hasn’t been put on in Britain since 1888, which, I think, is a shame.

It is a great little romantic comedy and feels surprisingly modern, but not too modern. This particular production by Red Handed Theatre Company under the direction of Jessica Swale is based on three different scripts and has been significantly shortened, but it feels very compact and the story flows very well. The language has been updated, so it is easy to follow the dialogue, but it is still very much a play of its time. I also really liked the addition of more contemporary lyrics in the songs.

The cast is very strong and they work incredibly well together. Gina Beck is charming as Letitia Hardy and her voice sounds as beautiful as always. Michael Lindall is excellent as her husband-to-be, Doricourt. His portrayal of a mad man is one of the funniest things I have seen in a while. Joseph MacNab and Hannah Spearritt (Yes, from S Club 7, but I wouldn’t have recognised her if I didn’t read it in the programme) have some wonderful scenes as Sir George and Lady Frances Touchwood. Christopher Logan proves that he has excellent comic timing and is simply hilarious as Flutter, as is Cassandra Bond (Kitty Willis), especially in the masquerade scenes. For some reason, Tim Dorsett (Villers) stood out a bit for me (in a good way). He had great stage presence and seemed to enjoy every single second he was on stage.

Marc Baylis, Holly Blair, Jackie Clune, Samuel Dent, Mark Fountain, Jeremy Joyce, Nigel Munson, Robin Soans and Maggie Steed are all great in their respective parts and add so much to the overall enjoyment of the play.

I really enjoyed seeing a play I knew absolutely nothing about. It is witty, sometimes silly, but an absolute treat to watch. It finishes its run at the Southwark Playhouse this Saturday, 1 October, so grab your tickets while you still can!