OPENED FEBRUARY 23, 2000....... CLOSED JULY 22, 2000.

 

"DUSTY: THE MUSICAL" opened on February 23, 2000 at the Churchill Theatre, Bromley, near London. A British tour followed, but a West End theatre run was not to be. Produced by Paul Farrah,and written by Paul Prescott, this new musical, was brought to the stage by award winning director Bob Tomson, whose production of Blood Brothers has drawn the crowds in the West End and on tour for an amazing 12 years, and Gillian Gregory, whose choreography for Me and My Girl has delighted audiences around the world. The show was designed by Charles Cusick Smith with lighting by Joe Atkins. The Musical Supervisor and Arranger is Colin Cattle. SEE REVIEW ON RIGHT

Mari Wilson, who had eighties hits with the likes of "Just What I Always Wanted" and "Cry Me A River" plays the part of Dusty.

An interview with Mari Wilson now appears on "Interview" page.

 

  SYNOPSIS OF THE SHOW:

Featuring almost thirty captivating songs made famous by the smooth voice of the sixties queen of soul, such as the unforgettable The Look of Love, I Only Want to Be With You and Son Of A Preacher Man, Dusty - The Musical explores the lives of two people, one real – a pop diva - and one fictitious – a fan.

Carol, middle-aged housewife, mother to two grown-up children, has reached a crossroads in her life. A die-hard fan of Dusty Springfield, she looks back to the Swinging Sixties and her teenage years as a wannabe starlet but somewhere along the way those dreams disappeared.

The stuff of Carol’s dreams – the make-up, the female singing group, the clothes, the lights, were also the dreams of a young Dusty, but for Dusty the dreams came true. For Carol, a hunger for stardom gives way to the routine of family life. However, unbeknownst to both of them, the dreams and reality of both their lives are shared experiences.

 

 

The officicial tour poster.

REVIEW:

OPENING NIGHT: BROMLEY.........Chrissie Cotterill , as Carol gives a truly wonderful performance, blending comedy & pathos effortlessly, and endearing herself to the audience from the outset. Carol's life, from her teens, is shadowed by that of Dusty, her idol, following her from Convent School, into The Lana Sisters & Springfields, and on to solo glory. Mari Wilson overcame some sound problems and performed Dusty's greatest hits with style and authority. Her costumes echo the Dusty we all knew & loved. Given that the show has had only had 3 weeks rehearsal, her stature will surely grow & grow. The show's set is an impressive metal affair which moves around as the scenes change, from home to night club, to factory, to TV studio.Some of the strongest moments for me were in the ensemble performances of Yesterday When I was Young & My Colouring Book, when the songs easily transformed into "musical theatre", without seeming out of place.

 

 

The songs from the show are: GOIN' BACK/ SEVEN LITTLE GIRLS/ ISLAND OF DREAMS/ THE WINDMILLS OF YOUR MIND/ I ONLY WANT TO BE WITH YOU/ STAY AWHILE/ I JUST DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH MYSELF/ IN THE MIDDLE OF NOWHERE/ MY COLOURING BOOK/ LITTLE BY LITTLE/ SON OF A PREACHER MAN/ 24 HOURS FROM TULSA/ I CLOSE MY EYES AND COUNT TO TEN/ LOSING YOU/ ALL I SEE IS YOU/ SOMEOF YOUR LOVIN'/ WISHIN' & HOPIN'/ QUIET PLEASE THERE'S A LADY ON STAGE/ GIVE ME TIME/ IN PRIVATE/ WHAT HAVE I DONE TO DESERVE THIS// REPUTATION/ THE LOOK OF LOVE/ IF YOU GO AWAY/ YESTERDAY WHEN I WAS YOUNG/ YOU DON'T HAVE TO SAY YOU LOVE ME/ I'LL TRY ANYTHING.

Debbie Paul and Elizabeth Hill are worthy of special mention (as Carol's friends) in and outstanding cast that includes David Streames, Susannah Bray, Jayne Nesbitt, Tim Clarke, Gordon Kenny, Robert Rawles, Alison Burrows, . Claire Bryan & Brian Douglas.And I musn't forget the musicians who captured the essence of Dusty's records, and sounded much bigger than their collective niumber.

The scene where the ill Dusty sings "If You Go Away" was almost too painful for me to watch, but then I am a bit too close for comfort. Most of the hits are there - I Only Want To Be With You, I'll Try Anything, You Don't Have To Say You Love Me, All I See Is You, Little By Little, and many others.

Once this company have overcome the slight teething problems this will be a show worthy of a West End run. Don't miss your chance to see it at any of the theatres below.

Simon Bell, Feb 24, 2000 (01:40UK)

DUSTY: THE MUSICAL closed after the 19:30 performance on July 22 at the THEATRE ROYAL, NOTTINGHAM.

 

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