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The Bodyguard - Theatre Royal Nottingham Review

Writer: Elle Milford

Disclaimer: Tickets were gifted in return for review

A musical take on the iconic 90s film directed by Frank Thompson starring Melody Thornton.

The Bodyguard is a musical based off of the film of the same name that starred Whitney Houston and Kevin Costner. Director Frank Thompson uses the music and choreography to showcase this story alongside Melody Thornton’s star power!

Melody Thornton and Company. Photo by Paul Coltas
The story follows a popstar, Rachel Marron, and her budding relationship with her bodyguard, Frank Farmer, who is hired to protect her after she gains a stalker sending threatening notes, this musical is full of Whitney Houston classics alongside other well known songs such as ‘Million Dollar Bill’ and ‘Saving All My Love’. With a combination of love and danger engulfed in bright colours and fun, fresh choreography the ladies of the audience are bound to be feeling like they are every woman whilst the men are feeling the strength of the bodyguard himself.

Melody Thornton stars as Rachel Marron, a popstar who becomes the subject of a dangerous stalker. A clear natural on the stage, she shared not only the dazzling side of the character, but also the independent yet vulnerable side during the character's personal moments. Choreography was slick during the performance scenes as expected from any popstar. Melody Thornton’s vocals were incredible as she controlled her vibrato whilst singing iconic song ‘I Will Always Love You’ and riffed like her life depended on it throughout the show. A stunning casting whilst watching her chemistry on stage not only with co-star, Ayden Callaghan, but also with Emily-Mae who plays Rachel's sister, Nicki and also Ryo Appadu and Manasseh Mapira, who both shared the role of Rachel's son Fletcher.

Frank Farmer, the bodyguard played by Ayden Callaghan commands the stage and gives a performance showing Frank as rough but controlled. He has some beautiful comical moments with Melody Thornton when he does karaoke and only lightens up once he is comfortable. With Ayden Callaghan we truly get to see the way Frank thaws as the production progresses on and he softens against Rachel Marrons fiery personality.

The sister of Rachel Marron, Nicki, played by Emily-Mae gave a stunning performance. A character living in her sister's shadow who yearns for love and something of her own. Emily-Mae portrayed a real raw performance of heartbreak and depth. ‘Saving All My Love’ is set in a club where Emily-Mae shows that Nicki is just as good as Rachel. The duet of ‘Run to You’ performed by both Emily-Mae and her on stage sister Melody Thornton was breathtaking as they riffed through and harmonized together with synchronicity that could only come from a bond.

Ayden Callaghan 'Frank Farmer' and Emily-Mae 'Nicki Marron'. Photo Paul Coltas

The ensemble work together to not only give off gorgeous choreography and backing vocals but also fill the scenes as make-up artists, concert goers and excited fans in the bar where Frank takes Rachel. They give dazzling smiles as they dance the choreography from the very beginning during the hot number ‘Queen of the Night’. A fab ensemble who embrace every inch of their tracks!

The Bodyguard is a wonderful story about love, sacrifice and loss that draws audiences in as a timeless classic with many known songs that add to the storytelling of this relationship. It has bright scenes full of joy and happiness versus it's dark and mysterious scenes that solidify why this love story will always be told. 

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

The Bodyguard plays at Nottingham's Theatre Royal until Saturday 8th July with tickets available from The tour continues with full tour schedule and tickets from

Melody Thornton and Company. Photo by Paul Coltas

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