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    Royal Court Theatre Liverpool

    Thursday 30th November 2017

     

    Every year the Royal Court Theatre Liverpool brings us a production that has us laughing, cheering and clapping for more - but this year might just be their greatest Christmas show yet.

     

    Director Cal McCrystal, the Production Team and cast have produced an excellent show that tells the story of the Nativity in a signature Royal Court style. Heartwarming and hilarious, The Scouse Nativity is the best Christmas show I have ever seen at The Royal Court Theatre Liverpool. It’s funny, it’s flawless and it’s fantastic.

     

     

    The show flows seamlessly from one moment to the next, as the revolving stage takes the audience from the scene to scene. It’s exquisitely designed; originally appearing as a book, it opens up to immerse you into the story and once revolving, appears as if the pages of the book are being turned as the story progresses. It’s clever design is equally matched by the quirky shop names, which are just as amusing as the witty dialogue that runs throughout the production.

     

    The dialogue is delivered with perfect timing; the cast reacting both to each other and the audience. Andrew Schofield, Stephen Fletcher and Keddy Sutton are a tremendous trio as the three shepherds: Terry, Jerry and Lil. Their interpretive dance and physical performances in the desert during Act One will have you roaring with laughter. From impressions of iconic musical trios (watch out for it in Act One) to their musical renditions of songs including ‘Could it be magic’, they are undoubtedly three of the most talented performers I have ever seen on a Royal Court Stage. They’re comedy gold and phenomenal from start to finish.

     

    Phenomenal too are the entire cast. Everyone is flawless from the first word to the last - or should that be the laugh, because trust me, you’re going to be laughing non-stop during the show.

     


     

    Paul Duckworth’s dancing during his rendition of Tom Jones’ ‘Help Yourself’ left me smiling and from one character to to the next, his quick change in vocals and physicality is brilliant throughout, while his interaction with the audience really immersed you into the story. 

     

    Completing the cast is the brilliant Lindzi Germain as Angela Gabriel, whose straight-talking wit helps to guide the lovable Mary and Joseph. Hayley Hampson and Michael Fletcher, who previously starred in Royal Court Christmas shows reunite once again, this time as Mary and Joseph. Their duets are nothing short of spectacular; their voices blending together in harmony in songs such as 'Go your own way'. They’re a delight to watch and two of my favourite performers of recent years. It’s a joy to watch them and I hope they’ll be in many more Royal Court Christmas shows for years to come.

     

    Throughout the production, the Royal Court choir’s performance of carols was beautiful; their voices accompanying Mary and Joseph’s journey throughout the production. Their performance was testament not only to their hard work, but also the work of the brilliant Royal Court Trust who bring together generations of singers as a community within the Royal Court Choir. The Choir were incredible and worthy of a standing ovation on their own.

     

    There’s so much to love about this production, that I couldn’t possibly fit it all into one review. There’s lot of surprises along the way, including a nod to a television talk show host as played by Andrew Schofield in a performance that has cemented itself as one of the greatest comedy performances I have and probably will ever see in a Royal Court Show. I don’t want to spoilt it for you though by telling you about all these amazing moments - I want you to see it for yourself, because this is THE must see show not only this holiday season, but of 2017.

     

    5 stars

     

    By Sarah O' Hara

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