Tuesday, 17 November 2015

Re-review: Kinky Boots, Adelphi

“Funk it up till it's ostentatious
Dress it up, it feels contagious”

Now extended through to May next year, the signs for Kinky Boots look cautiously positive though nothing is certain in the cut-throat world of new musicals and on this second viewing, it really does feel like a well-deserved success. Jerry Mitchell’s production is a ray of tightly choreographed, dragged-up sunshine but what I loved about going back was finding that several of the tunes from Cyndi Lauper’s accomplished score have successfully navigated earworm territory to become properly memorable. 

‘Everybody Say Yeah’ and ‘Raise You Up/Just Be’ end the show’s two acts in brilliantly rousing fashion, ‘Sex is in the Heel’ and ‘What A Woman Wants’ give Matt Henry’s Lola ample opportunity to fill the stage with exuberant personality and Amy Lennox continues to pretty much steal the show, not least in ‘The History of Wrong Guys’. And Killian Donnelly effortlessly smooths over some of Charlie’s more dubious character flaws (poor Nicola…) by scorching through hits like ‘Soul of a Man’.

My original review is linked here and I do stand by it, though had I the choice of 4.5 stars I might perhaps have gone with that for it isn’t the most perfect of books, Harvey Fierstein succumbing a little bit more to contrived convention than I’d previously allowed for, particularly in the second act which veers close to sentimentality. But for its good-natured, generosity of spirit and for high-kicking, downright fun, there aren’t many better shows currently in the West End. 

Running time: 2 hours 30 minutes (with interval)
Booking until 28th May



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