NODA Review - Back to the 80's2nd December 2013
I got a surprise when I got to the civic hall in Ellesmere Port to see “Back to the 80’s” as I had imagined that this was a show mainly featuring 80’s music etc. It turned out to be a musical.. which I must confess I had not heard of. Never mind the resulting show was excellent.
The story line and dialogue were pretty predictable but the enthusiasm, talent and sheer exuberance of the cast more than made up for this deficiency. Although not a child of the 80’s or the seventies or even just before that, but let’s not go there; I was pleasantly surprised to remember many of the songs on offer and how good they were. Director and Musical Director Craig Price and Co-Director /Choreographer Kayleigh Melluish captured the essence of the music and dialogue and really brought the songs to life by giving many of them dramatic content rather than just featuring the song alone e.g Darth Vader and Star Wars, very good. A great job from both Craig and Kayleigh.
The whole cast played it’s part with strong performances from all the principal players, both students and teachers and how great to see, shall I say, some of the more “mature” members kicking up their heels in some of the dance numbers. There were for me one or two particular highlights in this fine production. Dominic Melluish as Feargal the Computer Geek who caught the Audiences attention every time he appeared backed up by his two entertaining companions; a performance made all the more remarkable when it turned out he was only 16 and Liz Legerton who’s rendition of “Total Eclipse of the Heart” was exceptional. The off and on romance between her and Mr Cocker (Ian Deveraux- Roberts was carried off very well. Andy Nickson who had the responsibility of linking the action handled this difficult task with skill, not the easiest of parts.
Sound and Lighting were both very good and I especially liked the use of spotlights to highlight individuals and action. The set was ideal as were the costumes. Considering the era the music might have been very loud but it was just right …good job guys and gals. a fine effort by the whole team; If you get the chance go and see this Society perform, you won’t be disappointed.
Budge Groundsell, October 2013, noda.org.uk