Doom & Despondency amid the glitter

Cher Show is at Milton Keynes Theatre until Saturday 13th August.

If this story is to be believed, Cher has had hardly any light moments in her life. The signing of that first contract with Sonny was the start of a very downward spiral that just seems to have continued. Even the times that she hoped to win an Oscar but didn’t are made as big an event in the show as the time she did win one for her amazing performance in Moonstruck. The set is black and grey looking for all the world like a branch of Johnson’s Dry Cleaners with its racks and racks of costume bags on hangers. 

The use of many blasts of lights from a wall of coloured spots straight out from the stage certainly put colour onto the audience’s faces! One thing I didn’t know about Cher, she always had a set of dancers dressed as the campest row of sailors you ever saw!

I’ve just watched a clip online of Cher introducing her band, singers & dancers to the audience at one of her concerts – she was such fun, a million miles away from the Cher portrayed in The Cher Show.

The cast however, we’re top class, all of them. The three Chers: Babe (Millie O’Connell) gave us a good glimpse of the feisty young Cher, Lady (Danielle Steers) with possibly the closest to the sound of Cher’s voice and a special mention for Star played most convincingly on the night we were in by stand-in Samantha Ivey. Not sure when Samantha got the “You’re On” call but we’ll done that lady, not a foot wrong! Sonny (Lucas Rush) was such an accurate portrayal that those of us old enough to have seen Sonny & Cher perform had real memories brought back by Lucas’s skill.

Bob Mackie played with gay abandon by Jake Mitchell, put me in mind of the days of the GayLib protests against John Inman at his most flamboyant! 

If you prefer you musicals downbeat, this one starts at a low point in Cher’s life and slowly works it’s way down from there. If you are a fan of Cher’s songs then these are very acceptable cover versions of the real thing.  This show covers from when Cher was just 16 to where she admits to being 52 – that’s 36 years and still those camp sailors are still. Wearing the same outfits!

Conclusion: If you’re a fan of Cher, this is an eye opener, if you like her music then you’ll hear faithful portrayals of 35 of them.

The Cher Show is at Milton Keynes Theatre until Saturday, 13th August.

box office: 0844 871 7615 or online: www.atgtickets.com/miltonkeynes

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