White Christmas Review

With Christmas fast approaching, Curve's spectacular hit production of White Christmas transfers to London's West End for a run at the Dominion Theatre.
Danielle Hope (Betty Haynes), Danny Mac (Bob Wallace), Dan Burton (Phil Davis) and Clare Halse (Judy Haynes)
Photo by Johan Persson
The show is based on the classic movie, which starred Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye, features music by Irving Berlin and book by David Ives and Paul Blake. It follows two army veterans, Bob Wallace and Phil Davis who form a showbiz duo. They meet the Haynes sisters, Betty and Judy, as they search for a new sister act for their show. With an instant attraction between Phil and Judy, they agree with a plan to travel with the sisters where they are due to perform at a local inn. The inn is heavily in debt and owned by Bob and Phil’s old army General. They form a plan to perform a show and save the inn in time for Christmas.
Under the direction of Curve’s artistic director, Nikolai Foster, this show is a delight from the start. It's a slick production featuring superb set design by Michael Taylor with costumes designed by Diego Pitarch and wonderful lighting by Mark Henderson. It’s a dazzling spectacle.
Stephen Mear’s sublime choreography sizzles as a very talented company give life to every beat of his technical movement. The entire company move with ease and the group numbers like “Blue Skies” and “I Love A Piano” is when the show is at its soaring best.
The company during "Let Yourself Go". Photo by Johan Persson.
Leading the production and reprising their roles from the run at Curve is Danny Mac as Bob Wallace and Dan Burton as Phil Davis. Danny oozes charm and warmth and has a wonderful vocal quality about him. Dan has all the qualities of the Hollywood greats such as Fred Astaire, Bing Crosby, and Gene Kelly all re-born and in one body. He glides effortlessly across the stage and has such a fabulous vocal range. Together they make a great pairing and clearly thrive off each other. 
Danielle Hope as Betty and Clare Halse as Judy take on the roles of the Haynes sisters. Both sing and dance excellently. Danielle carries the more emotional side of the plot well, and her vocals in "Love, You Didn't Do Right By Me" shows off her fabulous vocal range. Clare (who was outstanding in the recent revival of 42nd Street at Theatre Royal Drury Lane) is one of the finest female leads and dancers, she proves this again at every opportunity especially during "I Love A Piano".

Michael Brandon is effective as General Henry Waverly. Brenda Edwards fills the auditorium with her huge vocal range, her solo number "Let Me Sing and I'm Happy" proves what a great singer she is. Sion Tudor Owen grasps every moment to shine in the spotlight as the loveable Ezekiel Foster. Erin Rushidi gets a crowd-pleasing turn as young Susan Waverly. 
The full company. Photo by Johan Persson.
The production is enhanced by a fabulous 7 piece band, under the musical direction of Neil MacDonald they play Irving Berlin's score perfectly.

This is a theatre production of the highest quality. Transferring all the elements that made the production successful at Curve and tightening it. Nikolai Foster proves again why he's one of the strongest directors around. A magical finale where the auditorium fills with snow as the title number is given a reprise leaves you on a high. With this production, you'll wish it could be a White Christmas every day.

Rating - ★★★★★ - a dazzling delightful festive joy for all ages. Theatrical perfection.

White Christmas plays at the Dominion Theatre in London booking until January 4th 2020. Visit https://www.whitechristmasthemusical.co.uk/ for more details and tickets. 

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