Deloris Van Cartier is back on the road in this laugh a minute musical from the genius of Alan Menken. Craig Revel Horwood is the director of this latest tour and his artistic genius is clear to see. The main stroke of genius from the direction is having the actors also play the musical instruments. This creates a new visual experience for audience members as well as giving the music the biggest orchestral experience possible.
Alexandra Burke is of course the star of the show and she fits the part of Deloris perfectly. Her voice is brilliant and her acting is so convincing that the audience are truly drawn into the story. The rest of the cast are equally superb with Karen Mann, Mother Superior, and Joe Vetch, Eddie, being the other stand out actors. Karen Mann adds a depth to the character which I have not seen in previous productions of Sister Act, mixing comedy and emotion effortlessly, whilst Joe Vetch had the audience rolling in the aisles with his solo number as well as feeling genuine concern and upset for his character.
The set for this production is a largely static affair however the audience are brilliantly transported to different locations throughout the show by subtle changes and additions as well as the excellent lighting that is employed throughout the show.
Sister Act follows the same story as the film but features different music. The master stroke was choosing Alan Menken to write the new music. Alan Menken is a musical genius, I have never heard a song of his I have not liked and this show is no exception. The audience are clapping along to up tempo numbers and holding back the tears when Alexandra Burke starts singing the ballad of the same name as the show. The different characters playing instruments on the stage is a technique employed a lot by the New Vic Theatre, based around the corner from the Regent Theatre where we saw this show, and this show uses it even better than them. The mixture of instruments is perfect for the music and also suits the characters well, no instrument looks out of place with the character.
This is one of the best shows I have ever seen, throughout the entire evening I was continually mesmerised, surprised and excited, and I've seen the show twice before! I pray that you get to experience the sisters for yourself in this heavenly show.
Reviewed by Daniel Keen at the Regent Theatre, Stoke-on-Trent.
This version of the show is currently touring the country until 3rd September. For further information and to book tickets visit the shows website.