Seaside Special (Show 2)

RICHARD BATSON Pavilion Theatre, Cromer

RICHARD BATSON

> Pavilion Theatre, Cromer

Not many shows follow a solo classical cello spot with an Elvis medley.

But Cromer's end-of-the-pier show continues to prove that variety is not only the spice of life, but the key to a good night's entertainment.

Add in some ballet, magic, music and comedy and you have the Special's traditional recipe for success.

The first show, called Showtime, is one of the best for years and contains some stunning traditional production numbers such as Mary Poppins and the circus.

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The second, Moving On Up, which opened on Saturday, has a slightly different flavour, with Top Of The Pops and Elvis delving into a different time zone.

What does not change is the same quality of cast – headed by funnyman Barnaby who has the perfect blend of comedy and empathy to fit the show and its audiences.

Versatile singers Adam Porter-Smith and Claire Maurer hop from swing to ballads, while cellist Jonathan Kitchen provides some pools of tranquillity among the seaside rock.

Comedy magician Mandy Muden's self-deprecation on the whole eased her over any hiccups in her act while the excellent Seaside Special Dancers and some stunning staging and costumes largely overcame the lethargy-inducing soaring temperatures in the auditorium.

Which show is the best? That will be down to individual taste. Despite being a pop and rock fan I would plump for show one.

But, with such a strong cast this year neither will disappoint, so go and see both and make your own mind up.

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