Whistle Down The Wind
JOHN LAWSON Whistle Down the Wind was a seminal movie of the 1960s and Adrian Connell's production for Norfolk Youth Music Theatre captures its emotional power perfectly.
Whistle Down The Wind was a seminal movie of the 1960s and Adrian Connell's production for Norfolk Youth Music Theatre captures it perfectly.
The young cast delightfully embody the wide-eyed innocence of children who know they must protect the man they find in their barn.
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They believe he is Jesus and they know they must save him from all that is evil in a modern world.
Mary Hayley Bell's morality tale of redemption is a classic, showing that even a murderer on the run - for such is their “Jesus” - can repent of his sins in the face of true faith and love.
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Coached once again to the highest standards this ensemble piece has some stand-out performances.
Anna Younger has a charming voice as Cathy and her acting when her world unravels before her eyes in the second act is nothing short of heart-rending. Jamie Minns is outstanding as her younger brother, notably in the tear-jerking Some Things Just Are duet with Anna.
Joe Ringer comes into his own in the second act as “the man” and there are neat cameos from Victoria Clarke and Anna Thirkettle as the Salvation Army officer and Sunday School teacher.
All around there are some good voices and acting on show - and Russell Labey's adaptation wrings every ounce of emotion from the story - but oh for a good tune to give those voices full rein.
Richard Taylor's score is far too clever for its own good, making the numbers dischordant and ridiculously complicated for a show written for a cast of children.
Musical director Mark Sharp has worked hard with his singers but no one will be whistling anything down the wind from Taylor's work.
However, the show is worth the price of the ticket for the emotionally-charged finale alone.