Tuesday 19 February 2013
Theatre review: Gay's the Word
Gay's the Word does what it says on the tin, a frothy bit of cheesy post-War fun held together by Dann's Gay, rictus-grinning her way through unpleasant phone calls from the bank and the mass walkout of her entire teaching staff. Trying to keep things together is Miss Cheadle (Kirsten Cooke, whose programme bio gamely admits she'll always be known as Michelle of the Résistance from 'Allo 'Allo.)
Helena Blackman and Josh Little acquit themselves well as the inevitable pair of starcrossed lovers although the latter's voice could do with being stronger in his solos. And there's a hefty cast of 19 hoofing around the small stage as a procession of enthusiastic but hopeless young drama students. But the standout moment comes from the school's teachers, four grumpy spinsters (Gaye Brown, Andrea Miller, Eileen Page and Elizabeth Seal) who in the second act opener "Teaching" gleefully recount the grisly deaths of past students they particularly disliked.
This isn't a style of music that really gets my foot tapping or gets stuck in my head but it's all part of a sunny show with the requisite amount of silliness, and a good antidote to a February evening.
Gay's the Word by Ivor Novello and Alan Melville, with book adaptations by Richard Stirling, is booking until the 2nd of March at the Jermyn Street Theatre.
Running time: 2 hours 20 minutes including interval.