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REVIEW: Feel the wind in your HAIR as West End stars bring groove to Norwich

PUBLISHED: 11:17 10 October 2020 | UPDATED: 11:17 10 October 2020

The cast of Hair the Musical which is currently being performed at UEA. Picture: Max Hilton

The cast of Hair the Musical which is currently being performed at UEA. Picture: Max Hilton

© Norwich Theatre

You do not need to be an Aquarius to have a shimmy or groove to the psychedelic delight that is HAIR.

T'Shan Williams stars in Hair the Musical which is currently being performed at UEA. Picture: Max HiltonT'Shan Williams stars in Hair the Musical which is currently being performed at UEA. Picture: Max Hilton

HAIR the Musical, has been brought to Norwich as an outdoor concert under the direction of Arlene Phillips for three shows as part of the successful Interlude festival by the Theatre Royal and Lost in Translation.

It is the closing act of the two week programme up at UEA and is certainly a showstopper.

Even without knowing the musical, many will recognise some of its greatest hits including I Got Life, Let The Sun Shine and Hair- which were sung with beautiful harmonies.

And just like the sunshine, this concert performance brought the dose of vitamin t (that’s theatre) we could all use right now all packed into 90 minutes.

Matt Croke stars in Hair the Musical which is currently being performed at UEA. Picture: Max HiltonMatt Croke stars in Hair the Musical which is currently being performed at UEA. Picture: Max Hilton

The limited show has brought together big names from the West End at a time where theatre fans and performers are no clearer on what the future holds.

And what a cast, performers include Jodie Steele, Sophie Isaac, Layton Williams, Frances Mayli McCann, Cleve September, Matt Croke, Jordan Luke Gage and T’Shan Williams who each gave it their all during their character’s solo numbers while not letting social distancing stop them create the tribe feel.

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The vocals of T’Shan Williams on the opening number Aquarius really set the show up and Heather’s star Jodie Steele was captivating as Sheila from the moment she walked on stage moving to every beat even when the focus was not on her, connecting with the audience throughout.

Layton Williams stars in Hair the Musical which is currently being performed at UEA. Picture: Max HiltonLayton Williams stars in Hair the Musical which is currently being performed at UEA. Picture: Max Hilton

HAIR explores the hippie movement of the 1960s and in the space of 90 minutes shines a light on race, sexual freedom, drugs, the environment and religion against the backdrop of the Vietnam War.

It works perfectly under a big top tent setting and the use of projection and lighting takes the audience on a trip with the characters as it builds towards a sad end.

The joy for theatre goers is they could have a chance to connect with all of the performers due to the concert setting, allowing for the show’s themes to really sink in as it built to its big finale.

And what an ending, the musicians had been delivering the amazing soundtrack but a lasting highlight was the cast singing acapella, which was a hair raising moment, leaving goosebumps.

Sophie Isacs stars in Hair the Musical which is currently being performed at UEA. Picture: Max HiltonSophie Isacs stars in Hair the Musical which is currently being performed at UEA. Picture: Max Hilton

The show packs a punch and you can only wonder what the cast would have been able to do if more movement was allowed, especially as the audience - despite the slight dip in temperature - were definitely grooving along.

Limited seats remain for Saturday afternoon’s show at 7.30pm with an extra show added on Sunday, October 11, 2pm, due to demand.

To buy tickets visit norwichtheatre.org or by phone on 01603 630000.


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