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Dirty Dancing at the Kings Theatre - Review

Published: 30th May 2019 08:27

 What teenage girl in 1987 didn't love Dirty Dancing? Swooning over Patrick Swayze and wishing they were Jennifer Grey, little did they know how iconic Dirty Dancing would become.

Years later the film is loved just as much and it seemed inevitable it would become a stage show. This week the touring show is at the Kings Theatre in Southsea.

Expectations were high and a lively full house meant the pressure was on.

Fans of the film will be pleased that the stage show keeps to the story with a few added extras. 'Baby' Houseman and her family are holidaying at the Kellerman resort. With a chance encounter with a watermelon, she is pulled into the exciting and sexy world of the resort dancers and meets Johnny Castle, agreeing to be his dance partner in place of Penny who is pregnant by the womanising Robbie.

It tells the story of their rehearsals and how they get closer to each other. Intertwined with this, is the ongoing story of Penny's abortion which goes horribly wrong while Baby's sister, Lisa, is planning to lose her virginity and a civil rights march is planned.

Overall it was a good show. There's a very imaginative water scene which drew some giggles from the audience and the dancers were fantastic. The set was pretty spectacular and technical but there were times when it seemed a ilttle stilted and some of the songs made for the show seemed out of place, but this is probably because of expectations from the film.

Parts of the show are quite raunchy and there was a particular bedroom scene featuring Johnny which was a favourite with the mainly female audience. Michael O'Reilly played this role well and seemed to have mastered the Swayze swagger. Kira Malou as Baby got the awkward moves just right as we witnessed her blossoming into a dancer.

Simone Covele as Penny stole the show every time she came on stage, such an amazing dancer and beautiful to watch.

A live band which played on stage added to the 'holiday park' atmosphere and we enjoyed an extra treat from them at the end.

It was the final scene that made it for me. With screams from the audience at the famous 'Nobody puts Baby in a corner', a perfect dance and a magnificent lift, the audience had the time of their lives.

Dirty Dancing is on until Saturday 1st June. Get tickets here.


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