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Acorn Antiques – The Musical By Victoria Wood

Presented by: Keynsham Youth Theatre

Venue: Broadlands School

Friday 2 November 2012

Theatre companies such as Keynsham Youth Theatre play an important role in nurturing the next generation of stage stars and I’m happy to say there were many who shone in their latest production of Acorn Antiques – The Musical.

The show, whose musical numbers parody that of Les Misérables and Chicago to name a few, is expertly staged with dazzling musical numbers and some excellent performances.

This show is based on the 2006 revival version which misses out the original West-End opening act of the show and actually creates a piece which is exactly the right length without effecting the overall production values. The plot certainly does not suffer in anyway from the revival version of the script.

There were many notable performances but a mention must be given to Lydia Stevens for her incredible, hilarious portrayal of Mrs Overall. Lydia fully embodied the character at all times and maintained a consistent physical performance and Birmingham accent. A demanding task for a young actress but one she orchestrated with aplomb.

The three sisters; Miss Babs, Miss Berta and Miss Bonnie (ably played by Rose Hanney-Davis, Tilly Ellis and Verity Brunwin) each had unique characteristics and mannerisms making for some incredibly funny situations.

Ross Peters, who played Mr Clifford was another strong performer who really came to the fore during his solo number.

If there was any criticism to be made it would be that some work could be done on vocal projection and diction. At times it was difficult to clearly hear what was being said and unfortunately a few good lines were missed because of this. The cast also need to learn how to “ride the applause” and not try and fight over the top of clapping and laughter with lines. This is something that comes with practice and experience and with such a talented cast they will learn how to gauge this in no time.

Overall this is a very strong production. If you want a show that is funny and entertaining then go and catch this one. It is guaranteed to leave you with a huge smile on your face.

Luke John Emmett