Wicked – 15 September 2006

Wicked is still in previews but I have to say with the exception of a few technical problems it is in very good shape. Compared to Broadway the theatre is right for this show. It breaks over that barrier which I felt in Broadway and the audience were very much taken in on the show. The sound was better and the volume of the cast certainly filled the theatre

Having heard some mixed comments on Idina I hoped she would be as good as she could be and I have to say she was superb and put so much into the the performance. Highlights, as expected were Defying Gravity and Wizard and I but for me the most powerful moment was the end of ‘No good deed’ as her anger was finally released. That is a lesson in how a song should be delivered.

Helen Dallimore as very good as Glinda and is really starting to make the character her own, there is a nice interaction with Idina and at the end of ‘For Good’ you felt a genuine connection between the two

Adam Garcia’s Fiyero is not as would be expected and whilst he has the singing and movement and the character is obviously there, the delivery of some lines is not quite right. He had a good interaction with both Idina and Helen but it is hard to pin exactly isn’t quite right

Katie Rowley Jones was very good at Nessa Rose, really developing into the true wicked witch of the piece. As her sidekick Boq, James Gillan, was suitable suppressed by Nessa Rose but was well portrayed in that you were not sympathetic to his plight as such as he, of all the characters, perhaps got what he deserved for being so shallow.

Miriam Margolyes was excellent as Madame Morrible. She has such a great stage presence and has nailed the character, delivering it to perfection.

Nigel Planer has captured the slight eccentric role of the Wizard and more than I have seen before the lines early in the pieces during sentimental man are played just right so the audience should make the connection with those lines later on.

Technically there were a few problems – Fiyero arrived late to which Idina changed her lines to say ‘if you had been on time you would have run me over’. During ‘One short day’ one of the weeble characters fell over and had to be rescued by backstage, greeted with great applause. At the end of the number Idina just couldn’t stop laughing. Just before ‘Wonderfu’ the wizard broke and Idina came out of character to say ‘well folks that’s live theatre for you’, did a small dance and went off. A short break followed and once the curtain went up the show just picked up exactly where it had left off.

The show itself is a fantastic spectacle, brilliant costumes, set and staging and leaves a great lasting impression. Long may it run.

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