20 August 2021

Kilworth's Memories of the Musicals Review

In a leafy corner of Leicestershire, the gorgeous Kilworth House Theatre is welcoming audiences back to its beautiful outdoor theatre for the first time in nearly 2 years. 

The beautiful theatre is set in the woods in the ground of Kilworth House in South West Leicestershire has had to twice cancel its planned summer seasons production of Carousel and Half A Sixpence (both are now due to play the venue in 2022). To compensate the theatre has come up with a tremendous musical theatre celebration where it re-visits numbers from its past productions. This serves up an evening of marvelous musical theatre. 

Julia Imbach, Matthew Goodgame, Emma Williams, Oscar Conlon Morrey, Carole Stennett and Owen McHugh

The great thing is that the wide variety of productions that the theatre has produced, from classics such as Oklahoma, The Sound of Music, West Side Story there is also get more recent shows like Sister Act and Legally Blonde. There really is something for everyone in this show - gorgeous music, hilarious moments, dazzling choreography, and high-class performers. With Kilworth's beautiful setting, what more could you wish for?
 
The show flies through nearly 50 numbers in its 2 hours and 20 minutes (including interval) run time beginning with some lovely nods to the venue itself, 'A Weekend at Hereford' from Me and My Girl has been adapted to 'A Weekend at Kilworth' and through to a sensational finale of 'You'll Never Walk Alone' from Carousel.

Owen McHugh and Julia Imbach


The show stars 6 superb performers all of whom come with the highest quality credentials. Matthew Goodgame, who also directs, oozes charm and leading man quality. He has a great vocal quality, numbers like 'Some Enchanted Evening' and 'Luck Be A Lady' fall perfectly into this range. Owen McHugh is quite the dancer, he glides with real fluidity.

Julia Imbach too dances with real skill and ability. Her voice packs a punch too, she has two numbers which are right up there with the evening's best - 'The Life I Never Led' from Sister Act and 'So In Love' from Kiss Me Kate. You can picture her leading the biggest productions in the near future. Carole Stennett's divine soulful vocals and stage presence carry through various songs. Anyone who knows me knows my feelings about the musical Cats but Stennett's rendition of 'Memory' is truly special. She lands every note with feeling. 

Emma Williams, who never disappoints, offers supreme vocals and charisma. Williams once again proves whilst she is one of the brightest stars of her generation. Every number she's in she enhances with her vocals and terrific acting through song. Oscar Conlon-Morrey delights in every moment, he is so assured, utterly hilarious, and with a stonking good voice. I defy you not to smile at any occasion watching him. The enjoyment he has for the craft is clearly written all over his face. Watching him ever tiring and getting more and more frustrated during 'Lambeth Walk' is a treat as is the hilarity of 'Sit Down You're Rocking The Boat' that closes act one

Owen McHugh, Oscar Conlon Morrey and Matthew Goodgame


With an outstanding cast comes an equally superb band. George Dyer has done a splendid job of orchestrating the production, the second act opens with 'The Kilworth Overture' which takes us through a short snippet of each of the past productions. George also serves as musical director and he and the other 7 musicians make a fabulous sound. Ryan Webber, Rebecca Gibson Swift, Carolyn Lawford, Russell Swift, Steve Fawbert, Elaine Ambridge, and Nathan Bray all deserve naming for their work.

Jason Taylor does an effective job with his lighting design, filling the space and the trees behind with colour. Choreographer Melanie Cripps creates impressive movement which is performed with great skill - this including some great spoonography!

As the night ends with a richly deserved standing ovation you can see the emotion written on the faces of the performers. My dad remarked on the journey home how much it was apparent the cast were enjoying themselves and playing to an audience again. Theatre is back at Kilworth and we're richer for it.

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ - pure musical theatre happiness.

Kilworth's Memories of the Musical runs until Sunday 29th August 2021. To book tickets visit https://www.kilworthhousetheatre.co.uk/

Emma Williams, Owen McHugh, Carole Stennett, Julia Imbach, and Matthew Goodgame.

2 comments

  1. Went to see Memories of the Musicals last Saturday night.
    It was pure magic all the way 5 stars. Looking forward to next years production.
    Gil and Heather Robinson from Doncaster

    ReplyDelete
  2. Went to see this show tonight and it was brilliant. All of the 6 performers were so good and seemed to be enjoying it too. The pianist was outstanding and looked so happy. A very good and memorable show.

    ReplyDelete

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