‘9 to 5 The Musical’. Lyceum Theatre, Sheffield, until April 27.
Dolly Parton is no stranger to South Yorkshire. She’s twice packed Sheffield’s Motorpoint Arena and personally launched the highly successful UK version of her Imagination Library book-gifting scheme in Rotherham.
Nashville’s sparkly queen is once again in town for ‘9 to 5 The Musical’ – at least on the face of a giant, interactive clock screen – and both she and the show charmed the crowd.
‘9 to 5 The Musical’ is adapted from the 1980 film starring Parton, Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, which tells the story of women office workers who get their own back on their sexist boss.
The tale retains its original setting, complete with chunky typewriters and orange desk partitions, and much of the bitingly-funny dialogue makes the transition from screen to stage. However there are new elements to the book, as well as a whole set of songs from the Parton-pen in addition to the title tune and anthem of office parties everywhere.
Lyrics shoot from the hip – a song called ‘Sexist, Egotistical, Lying, Hypocritical Bigot’ for example – and seem to resonate with the audience (as it’s been pointed out, in some way the workplace hasn’t changed a deal in 30-odd years).
Of the three female leads, Amy Lennox (Doralee) has the hardest job by tackling the part played by Parton in the firm, but she makes the role her own. Co-stars Natalie Casey (Judy) and Jackie Clune (Violet) also turn in terrific vocal and dramatic performances.
Mark Moraghan (Hart) and Anita Louise Combe (Roz) do a delicious number when the boss’ fawning admirer conjures up her desk fantasy.
Overall verdict? A fabulously entertaining antidote to a heavy day at work.