It’s always a joy to be in a packed theatre, and even more so after so long in the dark. The dedicated Grease fans were out in force at the Bristol Hippodrome last night. Extra covid checks and an earlier first aid incident meant curtain up was 20 minutes late, but the audience didn’t seem to mind.
If you’re heading to watch Grease expecting an on-stage rendition of the movie, you’re likely to be disappointed; though the show packs all the fan-favourite familiar songs in, they don’t follow the sequence of the film, and though the plot remains similar there are very notable differences, the most obvious being the lack of a certain shiny red car.
As Vince Fontaine and Teen Angel, Peter Andre is a joy to watch. It’s apparent he’s having an absolute blast; he knows what the audience want and expect from him, and he delivers it in droves. His accomplished performance eclipses those of his co-stars. The acting scenes fall flat, but the show is saved by some excellent song and dance numbers, though some of the words were lost at times. Tendai Rinomhota is the strongest as Betty Rizzo, and Ellie Kingdon sang her heart out as the alternate Sandy. Overall, you can’t fail to have a good time with Grease, but the show shouldn’t coast on its reputation. I’d like to see more chemistry from the cast in acting scenes, especially between the main couples, and the passion and drive with which they attack the dance sequences could do to be applied throughout.