Bonnie & Clyde – Sutton Arts Theatre ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Bonnie & Clyde – Sutton Arts Theatre

Sutton Arts Theatre

Thursday 20th June 2024 – Opening Night

By Nigel Gambles

Disclaimer: Gifted tickets in exchange for an honest review.

Before I begin, I have to say that unbelievably this was my first visit to Sutton Arts Theatre and it will not be my last. What a wonderful venue. It may not be as large as others but it has a wonderful friendly feeling.

Also this is my first time seeing Bonnie and Clyde so I was wondering how they would transpose this story to the stage.

The tale of Bonnie and Clyde is one that is fast paced, spanning a few short years, before they faced their end. The incredible songbook by Don Black and Frank Wildhorn truly made the show nothing short of spectacular

This is a dramatic retelling of the infamous story of star-crossed lovers turned ruthless outlaws on the run. While Bonnie dreams of magazine covers and stardom, Clyde fantasizes about a life of crime and driving getaway cars. When the unlikely pair fall madly in love, they embark on a journey of becoming front-page news as gun-toting criminals, as they flee the long arm of the law. Along with Clyde’s slightly more reluctant brother Buck and his god-fearing wife Blanche, the Barrow gang become some of America’s most notorious thieves and murderers, increasingly sought after by the Sheriff’s department and hurtling towards a sticky end. As the cops draw in, both Bonnie and Clyde are content with reaching their bitter end and how they lived their lives together.

The production leans into its heavily stylised 1920’s setting, both physically and audibly. The music is a real strong point, with gorgeous speak-easy style melodies combined with tongue-in-cheek lyrics about love and crime. Bonnie’s stand out ballad “Dyin’ Ain’t So Bad” in the second act, the softness and warmth of the song makes you almost want to root for this criminal duo. Clyde’s “Raise Some Hell” is incredibly powerful and shows you just how far he is willing to go to be remembered. Each song seemed to sweep you away into the roaring 20’s and the applause from the audience seemed to cement that fact and earn plenty of commendation from the audience. The set design is interesting to say the least, its really quite bare with minimal props, but the use of screens and projection helps to fill out the stage. This all helped by the very atmospheric lighting by Going Dark Theatrical Services

The stand out performances inevitably come from the brilliantly cast leads, Sophie McCoy as Bonnie and Tom Cooper as Clyde. Sophie makes the role her own. Every bit of sass, confidence, and sultriness as she needs put into this femme fatale. Tom is a powerhouse, producing a gritty yet loveable rogue. Neither of them put a foot wrong vocally, and their voices are stunning, both as a duo and individually. They have undeniable chemistry, drawing us in from their first meeting to their last breaths.

Janine Henderson is suitably frustrated as the increasingly desperate Blanche, while Dan McCloskey gives both a powerful and skulking interpretation of loyal brother ‘Buck’ Barrow.

Olly Foster and Paul Atkins lead a fabulous ensemble with some jaw-dropping vocals as the Deputy and Preacher respectively.

Bonnie & Clyde is a show that raises hell and leaves you remembering the story of this iconic killer duo. It puts what we have learnt in stories and books onto a stage to a killer soundtrack that everyone will be singing for days after

Emily Armstrong as the director of this show should be extremely proud as this is certainly a production that could be put on in the West End. Nick Allen, the musical director ensures that the orchestra give their all to wonderful effect

For Tickets click the link 👉

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