Bristol Hippodrome

 

The Bodyguard January 2016

 

Alexandra Burke is one hot momma in the musical The Bodyguard which opened at the Bristol Hippodrome this week.

Normally I am not a fan of romantic thrillers or rom coms and didn’t like the 1992 film with Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston although everyone else and their dog did and it broke box office records.

But this musical show filled up my senses and made me cry – no, I can’t believe that either.

It also made me smile, laugh and hold my breath in pleasurable suspense.

The songs are straight out of the Whitney Houston song book.

Who could fail to be moved by the lyrics of Greatest Love Of All and of course, I Will Always Love You.

While for me the film failed because it seemed so Mills & Boon implausible but on stage with this great cast it was believable and vroom vroom.

In a darkened theatre The Bodyguard begins with a loud bang and in a glitzy finale goes out in resounding triumph – I loved it.

Alexandra Burke is sensational as super star Rachel Marron who plays the know-all diva with great panache.

Couldn’t help but laugh when during her many razzle dazzle costume changes she sported flip-flops hidden under a sequined gown.

And Kung Fu martial arts trained Daniel Daszek-Green, the youngster playing her 10-year-old son Fletcher, sang, danced and backward flipped with the best of them.

The storyline follows the romance of former Secret Service agent turned reluctant bodyguard Frank Farmer played by stage and film actor Stuart Reid – one of his best bits is a karaoke turn in the nightclub which is embarrassing hilarious.

In Cluedo-like scenes Rachel is stalked by a hoodie wielding an assortment of weapons and is sent death threat letters making her Oscar nominated appearance doubtful.

Our stars initially clash as a paranoid Frank puts Rachel in a log cabin lockdown but then there is a creak at the wooden front door...

Loved the X-factor rated bedroom scene with its majestic grandeur all high ceilings, floaty pink curtains and lip-smacking innuendoes!

When Rachel first glimpses Frank she remarks: “I was expecting someone bigger.”

Frank responds: “It’s my disguise.”

And at the recording studio they ask: “What got into her?”

Answer: “Frank.”

However, if they had a Facebook page under relationship I am sure they would post ‘it’s complicated’.

The tempo continues to sizzles with a raunchy snog at the end of first half, hot dancers, flame-throwing props, and a smokescreen shot reminisce of the final scene in An Officer And A Gentleman.

The show is bang up-to-date with its social media references and fans taking selfies and Youtube videos on their mobiles.

The set cleverly uses either a square telescopic view to get up close and personal or a shuttered reveal and the special effects are superb with projected black and white footage, mist and music all adding to the tension.

The huge golden Oscar statuette at the end was inspiring.

The lithe and loveless sister Nicki is played with aplomb by Melissa James and funnily enough a Kevin Costner lookalike in the shape of Mike Denman is the menacing stalker.

Pop Idol contestant Zoe Birkett plays the central role at matinees and acts as understudy.

The Bodyguard is at the Bristol Hippodrome until Saturday, January 30.

  • As an aside when we arrived at the theatre comedian Eddie Large was in a mischievous mood trying to evict the ladies sitting in front of us. He had mistaken row O for row Q – another trip to Specsavers at Portishead methinks. Then Mr Large started singing aloud despite the notice in the Piano Bar warning ‘No singing -this is a show not a concert opportunity to join in at the end’...and everyone did, on their feet and swaying accompanied by the cast and band including the much-loved Posset funnyman.

Carol Deacon

Book The Bodguard

 

PREVIEW

The Bodyguard, the award-winning musical based on the blockbuster film, is heading to Bristol in 2016.

Direct from its smash-hit West End run, the show is coming to The Bristol Hippodrome for 22 performances only!
Former Secret Service agent turned bodyguard, Frank Farmer, is hired to protect superstar Rachel Marron from an unknown stalker.

Each expects to be in charge - what they don’t expect is to fall in love.
The musical features a whole host of Whitney Houston’s greatest hits including Queen Of The Night, So Emotional, One Moment In Time, Saving All My Love, I'm Your Baby Tonight, Run To You, I Have Nothing, Jesus Loves Me, I Wanna Dance With Somebody and one of the greatest hit songs of all time - I Will Always Love You.

The Bodyguard will play at The Bristol Hippodrome from Wednesday to Saturday, January 13-30 and tickets are on sale NOW.

Bristol Hippodrome acting general manager Lisa Chu said: “The Bodyguard is the perfect West End show to kick off 2016.

"When everyone has a taste of those January blues after the festive season this blockbuster show packed full of great songs is the perfect antidote."We are so lucky to be well supported by the greater Bristol public that all the big show producers want to bring their West End shows to the Hippodrome.”

This not-for-profit online newspaper is managed by Carol Deacon former editor of award-winning Clevedon Mercury titles and powered by Wix.com