Hairspray tour 2018
Hairspray is the tale of Tracy Turnblad, the big little girl growing up in 1960s Baltimore whose youthful exuberance sparks a revolution. It’s a light-hearted civil rights story, set to catchy rhythm-and-blues
The tour began last year and continues until August 2018. Perhaps this is why at times the set is unimpressive and at times a relatively low-quality and sometimes blurred screen depicting the street and various other settings existed. Neverthless, fans of the movie are in their element as high-energy “Good Morning Baltimore”, “I can Hear the Bells” and the powerful “I Know Where I’ve Been” grace the stage. The later is led by 2005 X Factor semi-finalist Brenda Edwards. Her astonishingly powerful and soulful voice was a real treat and a real highlight of the production, bringing a real sense of class to this production.
The live orchestra are great, but I do feel if they were given more prominence downstage it would help the audience to feel a little more involved
Rebecca Mendoza, playing Tracy, hitting all the climactic notes, she allows the characters goodness to shine out radiantly, especially as she gets together with teen hunk Link Larkin, played by the suave and chiselled Edward Chitticks.
Tracy’s friend Penny (Annalise Liard-Bailey) is brilliant, vocals are stunning and it’s glorious to watch Penny blossom. Also on top form is Tracy’s mother Edna, played with grace and style by Matt Rixon. Understudy Graham MacDuff, who appears as Tracy’s father Wilbur on press night, plays off Rixon brilliantly. The pair absolutely delight the audience with their romantic number, You’re Timeless to Me.
The enthusiastic cast move and jive their way through the show from opening Good Morning Baltimore to the marathon finale You Can’t Stop the Beat.
The standing ovation to this energetic and joyful conclusion is well deserved.