Students stunning in song

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REVIEW: “Songs from the Shows,” Clitheroe Royal Grammar School Drama Club at The Grand, Clitheroe.

The first act focuses on characters down on their luck. Obviously there are hits from Oliver!, Cabaret, Les Miz. The second act looks at characters in better financial circumstances, but still with some darker elements in musicals such as High Society, 42nd Street and Chicago.

I was enthralled by the range of voices and the talent of these young performers. The “senior” soloists were impressive. Jack Botell opens with Joseph’s Close Every Door to Me, and finishes the first act with a moving rendition of Bring Him Home from Les Miz and in the second act gives us Music of the Night from Phantom – a great voice.

I also enjoyed Louise Clarke’s As Long as He Needs Me, Laura Pickup’s super version of Maybe This Time, Sarah Wright’s On my Own and Sarah Basquill gives a great I Dreamed a Dream, made so famous by “Subo”.

I loved Arthur Geldard, who does a wonderful Frank Sinatra in two solos and Razzle Dazzle. Jasmine Stott gives us Barbra Streisand and a whole host of talented singers contribute to a great evening. Even the younger singers make their mark. Ailsa Murray and Mollie Yearby are a confident Artful Dodger and Oliver and Oscar Drummer gets us to the church on time. I had a wonderful evening.

My Oscar goes to Tobias Illingworth, who played the piano accompaniment to many of the songs, and gave us a comic dentist from Little Shop of Horrors and an amazingly dramatic song, Confrontation, from a musical I haven’t seen, Jekyll.

Ms Elliot’s production has some terrific choreography. A strong chorus enjoy both the singing and the dancing and James Moore and Freddie Redfern make amusing comperes. I go to see so many wonderful productions, but I still get so much pleasure from seeing young people gain in confidence and get the response from a delighted audience. Catch it at CRGS on July 16th and 17th.

PIPPA MUNRO HEBDEN.