Lionel Barts Oliver! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Oliver – Manor Musical Theatre Company

Sutton Coldfield Town Hall

Monday 24th October 2022 – Dress Rehearsal

By Nigel Gambles

Photography – Nigel Gambles Photography

We were back at the Town Hall the second time in a week and Manor Musical Theatre Company were “Considering Us Part Of The Family”

Yes Oliver has returned to the Town Hall and you will absolutely be asking for more.

Directed by Pam & James Garrington, the staging of the production is very traditional, helping the audience be transported to the era, the set costumes lighting and props were all sympathetic to this. The set was fantastic and a special mention to “Going Dark Theatrical Services” for the atmospheric lighting. Coreography is by Jennie Mason who has created some great routines considering the size of the ensemble and stage keeping them in style of the set. Musical Director is Tim Harding and the nine piece band did a lovely job although I do think the volume was too loud in some cases with the soloists struggling to compete at times.

For this production there are two sets of youngsters team jelly and team custard! We were treated to team custard who are Evan Taylor playing Oliver Twist who very much looked the part and told the story well coming across more confidently as the show progressed. Jack Goode played the Dodger. For me he was one of the stand out performances, his command of the stage was excellent and the the confidence of his performance superb. His rapport with Nancy and Fagan  was also very good.

Fagan is played by Barry Styles a regular with the group, his character portrayal is superb and convincing taking command of the stage on every appearance

Nancy is played by Paula O’Hare who you might remember as an excellent Maria in the company production of Sound of Music earlier this year. She brings great energy and enthusiasm to this iconic role her vocals strong and clear.

Bill Sikes is played by Peter Bushby, suitably scary and menacing.

There are far too many roles to really mention in this review but I will say that all the cast and ensemble were excellent and seemed to throughly enjoy themselves and I felt that the overall acting and storytelling was very strong. The vocals and choreography were excellent. Well done to all on stage and behind the scenes.

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