Wednesday, 4 July 2012

A Slice Of Saturday Night At Nottingham Arts Theatre REVIEW

Photo by Tim Biller
You may think you haven't heard of the musical A Slice of Saturday Night- and yet there's something awfully familiar about all of its songs... for this cheeky 60s pastiche merrily and blatantly rips off songs by The Beatles, Sonny and Cher, Simon and Garfunkel and the rest with naughty gusto and without even batting a heavily false-eyelashed eye.

It's that old-fashioned and evergreen story of the agonies and ecstasies of a teenage night out at the Club A Go Go set around 1964, and the band are on stage recessed into a striking checker-board set designed by director David Price. All dressed up with somewhere cool to go in lovingly-designed fabby 60s costumes and hairdos, the cast do a fun turn as a likeable bunch of preening, pepped up, love-lorn and loved-up show-off/insecure young birds and blokes.

It's upbeat teenage angst but what really got the audience rockin' was the fnar-fnar adolescent naughty rude bits, the wistful duet 'Seventeen And Never Done It' plus other songs about teenage, ahem, 'stirrings', prompting hearty cackles from the auditorium and, confidentially, some quite splendidly-loud snortings of laughter from our row. This is amateur theatre, but it's easy to forget that during a tour de force rendition of The Long Walk Back by the very impressive Cory Nugent and some truly lovely ensemble singing by the cast. Ciaran Stones is a bit of a comic star as pill-popping goon-ball Eddie and you wouldn't want to mess with Malcolm Cotton as club owner Eric 'Rubber-Legs' De Vine, jovially in charge, and looking like he can handle himself. Hannah Rogers-Gee's nicely-haughty don't-touch-me ice maiden amusingly comes across quite sulky Catherine Tate as Frigid-Bridget and wide boy Christopher Smith does a great job of fancying himself as Gary whilst Kirstie Brown is sweetie-sweet and in beautiful voice as shy new girl Sharon, along with flirtily-beehived Sarah Lee as Penny and Shirl and a heartfelt Amy Rogers-Gee, wishing for a flat chest in the song Twiggy.

It's a two-hour musical tumble of playful fun with the cast mingling with the audience in the interval, and if you're lucky/unlucky you might be taken by the hand by a likely lad or dolly bird and led onstage to take part in Eddie's Hokey Cokey in front of everyone! (Can't say you weren't warned!)

Cool! Fab! Trendy! It's the hippest show in town and you can help yourself to A Slice of Saturday Night every night this week- until Saturday night. Pull on those Chelsea boots and hipster trousers and boogie and groove on down to watch this People's Theatre Company cast at our very own Nottingham Arts Theatre whilst you still can, yeah baby.

Tickets cost £12/£10, full details of show times and booking can be found at

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