A dazzling extravaganza of musical talent, choreography and passionate performances. We Will Rock You at Birmingham Hippodrome is the show to see this season.
After years of avoiding going to see this, in some way feeling it would negatively affect my memories of the legendary Freddie Mercury, I finally found myself ready to indulge in the 20th anniversary production of this jukebox musical. These are of course extraordinary shoes to attempt to fill …
We Will Rock You tells the story of a group of ‘Bohemians’ struggling to restore freedom of thought into a society that has seemingly sleepwalked into a sterile dystopian Metaverse, where everyone acts and dresses the same in an insipid digital world.
If this all sounds a bit heavy then don’t let it; it’s delivered with panache, hilarious punchlines and wondrous wackiness. And for a touring show, the stage set is minimalist but very effective while the costumes are fittingly thought out, impactful and beautifully crafted.
If any money was saved on the set, it was certainly re-invested in the cast (credit to David Martin and Anne Vosser). From the live musicians and singers to the perfectly choreographed synchronicity, this is a show where the performances shine. And wow, didn’t they just deliver! The casts collective commitment truly reflected their honour, passion and pleasure at the chance to blast out such iconic songs by such an iconic star.
Ian Mcintosh (Galileo) at times embodies Freddie Mercury whilst retaining himself in the role, a truly exceptional lead performance. But he wasn’t the only one … there’s stellar performances from Elena Skye (Scaramouche), Adam Strong (Khashoggi) and the wonderful Jennifer O’Leary (Killer Queen) who all belted out one massive song after the other with their capably big voices. This was a team performance of epic proportions, all equally working hard and together to do Queen and the main man the justice deserved. So much so, the show ended with an entirely natural rapid rising standing ovation, followed by a second one after an extraordinary finale rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody.
So, if you’re currently absorbed in the Metaverse buying absurdly priced trainers made from pixels to dress your avatar, I recommend you invest your cash in a far more fulfilling ancient pastime and immerse yourself in We Will Rock You instead!