Liam Rudden: Keeping up to date with musicals

The Adams Family's Uncle 'Fester - Peter Vint. Pic: Comp
The Adams Family's Uncle 'Fester - Peter Vint. Pic: Comp
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MUSICALS. As anyone who subscribes to my Facebook page or follows me on Twitter will know, I have a love/hate relationship with musical theatre - an art form responsible for some of the most twee, self-indulgent productions I have ever seen and equally for some of the most breathtakingly spectacular and emotionally draining.

It’s a style of theatre that suffers because, to be done well, you need voices, lots of voices. Not click-tracked recordings of soaring harmonies, but real people on stage, belting out the score, live.

All too often these days, with touring producers’ eyes ever on the bottom line, the chances of finding a profess-ional production that does are few and far between, so such ‘spectaculars’ tend to be the remit of well-meaning amateurs, who make up for their limited talent with enthusiasm and passion.

Consequently I seldom get excited about musicals. When I do, it’s usually a new title - Passport to Pimlico, Stephen Ward The Musical, American Idiot, and I loved Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark, on Broadway.

One I missed when it enjoyed a short run in New York, was The Addams Family, so with trepidation I headed to the King’s last week to see the Scottish premiere, by the MGA Academy, and what a great show it turned out to be - strong score, funky dance routines, and a love conquers all storyline.

Performed by a well-drilled 66- strong company, with 30-odd chorus members hanging from the boxes, it offered a unique opportunity to hear the score in all its glory.

A bonus came courtesy of two stand out turns -Peter Vint as Uncle Fester,owned the show with an understanding of stagecraft beyond his years, while Rhona Hay, as Alice Beineke, was naturally comedic. Both stars of the future

So, a great night out and another musical to add to my ‘must see again’ list.