REVIEW: Dreamboats and Petticoats, The Lyceum

This musical, named after the best selling album, could easily have been trite and contrived; a loose story of 60's youngsters, complete with teenage angst, falling in and out of love and entering a song writing competition, the whole show linked by all the songs from the 60's you remember.

But from the opening number of Let's Dance (Chris Montez had the orginal hit ) the show rocks. Each member of the young cast exudes talent and committment as they sing and dance their way, with superb timing, through songs that their parents sang and everyone can sing along too.

Forty years on and countless replays later, most know the words to most of the songs, a tribute no doubt to the art of telling a story in under three minutes.

If you can remember the E type Jag unveiled and Danny Blanchflower refusing to appear on This is Your Life; Rod Laver winning Wimbledon and the contraceptive pill going on sale that's the era in which Bobby competes with Norman for the affection of sweet Sue, growing up in the 60's, all set to over 40 timeless songs.

Bobby, played by Josh Capper, is ideally cast at the geeky teenager, growing into a man. Song writing schoogirl Laura (Lauren Hood) perfectly cast as a sweet innocent and Norman (Jonathan Bremner) as the cocky, know it all, Jack the Lad, older than his years who produces a performance of comedy and pathos, epitomising the ego maniacal character with charm and Elvis-like curling lip and hip swivelling gyrations.

The young cast belt out impressive performances with gusto, the band rocking out songs like The Wanderer, Da Do Ron Ron, Poetry in Motion, Do You Wanna dance etc etc. And a day at the seaside helps to create the type of nostalgia that really does make you feel good.

Bobby's voice reaches the Lyceum roof on Only the Lonely, while Laura's Teenager in Love is achingly heartfelt.

The whole cast certainly work together in unison, their ability and obvious enjoyment is transmitted to the audience.

The quality of the performance is simply staggering and from the last few numbers starting with Let's Twist Again; the whole Lyceum audience was on its feet, singing, clapping and dancing.

If this feelgood musical doesn't do what is says on the tin then really you must have died!

So many classic songs from the late 50's and 60's - nostalgia really doesn't get any better than this.

This show and cast deserves to run and run ....

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