Chicago: The musical for people who don't like musicals
Auckland Theatre Company presents Chicago
Directed by Michael Hurst
Performed at Q Theatre, 305 Queen Street
A good musical has you all but out of your seat. It's catching yourself humming the tunes on the car ride home.
It's waking up the next morning with a medley of songs in your head.
Auckland Theatre Company's Chicago might not be theatre-as-art, but for a night's entertainment, it's bloody good fun. And it's a little bit saucy.
First up, it's a great musical for people who don't like musicals. Speaking and singing takes place in equal measure. The songs sizzle, the script is clever and there's a bit of a message to take away if you're someone who needs the next level.
The cast are all wonderfully slimy and engaging. They might not all have their American accents down pat, but they sure know how to move.
The Cell Block Tango scene is a highlight of the show and a testament to Mike Edward's abs that he can withstand the torture his cast mates put him through. The scene ends as he swings back and forth on a rope. He's excellent in his role as the man who does it all and his acrobatics are impressive.
It's a thrill to see Lucy Lawless in the part of Velma Kelly. For the most part she's great, though there are a couple of scenes that would work better if she were more of a dancer.
Shane Cortese is iffy on the accent, but otherwise faultless as the gun lawyer Billy Flynn.
Andrew Grainger plays Roxy's husband Amos Hart and has the audience eating out of his hand by show's end.
Amanda Billing is brilliant in the lead role. She can sing, she can act, she can dance, and she looks great on stage in next to nothing.
Sandra Rasmussen is also a favourite as the tap dancing MC who has a kind of glamour that's slipping with each swig of the bottle.
The show is cleverly staged and has little in the way of props. It really relies on the strength of its cast and they don't disappoint. Their costumes are great, their bods are even better, and god knows, they put them to good use.
The audience came alive at the end, but there were a few prudish looking people who let the odd yawn escape. They must have had their eyes downcast, because the show is edge-of-your-seat-tapping-your-leg good times from start to finish. Go see it.