Review: Jekyll & Hyde

Jekyll and Hyde

Theatre Royal Norwich

He can feel it in his fingers. He can feel it in his toes as Wet Wet Wet's heart throb lead singer Marti Pellow turns from a dishy doctor into a dastardly killer.

The twinkle eyed Scot is the perfect choice for the title role in this classic musical. In a rock and roll clich� he had his own real life battle with demon drink and drugs in the past.

But Marti is now dry, dry, dry and has re-invented his singing career and a successful stage one too thanks to a stunning singing voice with a twist of Jack Nicholson style demonic dash that also landed him the lead role in the Witches of Eastwick musical.

Jekyll and Hyde is based on the Victorian Gothic novella of Robert Louis Stephenson which explores the concept of split personality. The stage show is similarly bipolar – an odd mix of all-singing-all-dancing stage musical with bloodthirsty murder.

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Pellow draws on musical experience brimming with bags of hit singles, including the 15-week number one Love is All Around from the Four Weddings and a Funeral movie.

This show is more six funerals and an unfulfilled engagement as the good doctor Henry dabbles with chemistry to unleash the killer 'hyding' inside him.

The first dalliance with the dark side is ushered in by the show's best known song This is the Moment delivered brilliantly by Pellow with power and passion, whose performance drew a standing ovation at the end.

Love and sex is all around, with his engagement to Emma Carew and a flirtatious and fatal fling with prostitute Lucy Harris as the tortured hero/villain flits between his two lives and two women.

Sabrina Carter as fun-loving Lucy has a rich voice best shown in her solo Someone Like You, while soprano Sarah Earnshaw as fiancee Emma particularly impressed in her duet with the doctor Take Me As I am.

The dialogue seemed a little stilted at times compared with the slickness of the music and production, while the 'horror' was a bit wooden and staged. But people came out to enjoy a musical - which runs until Saturday - not to be scared wit, wit, witless.

Richard Batson