03/02/14 – Theatre Royal, Brighton
I love going to the theatre and don’t get me wrong, many shows leave me beaming and smiling into the following week, however many miss that certain kind of magic that you only find on stage. Last night I went to see Thriller Live – the musical about Michael Jackson’s career from the days of Jackson 5 to the album BAD. The opening night of the popular musical at the Theatre Royal, Brighton, certainly brought that magic that I seek!
Touring the world since 2006, Thriller Live reveals the highlights of Michael Jackson’s tremendous career and celebrates the fact that he’s one of the most downloaded artists of all time, winning 8 Grammy Awards and selling 750 million records. His success was, and still is, unparalleled.
Bursting onto the stage with Jackson 5 classics such as Blame It On The Boogie, ABC and I Want You Back, the cast were adorned in bell bottoms and glitzy V-necks – oh so 70s!
The turning point to the show was Sean Christopher’s appearance during Dangerous. His dancing was absolutely on a par with Jackson. The audience yelped in excitement as he performed the famous ‘lean’, the moonwalk and body popped like I’ve never seen. Sean Christopher is incredibly talented and I could’ve watched him for the entire show! I only wished he was on stage more. Despite having a beautiful voice suited to Motown, Pop, Rock and RnB, I felt the role of Cleo Higgins was a little too big – after all this was a show about a male artist.
Stars of the night included lead vocalist Jesse Smith. The rock vibe to the tracks he performed was unique and captivating, his performance of She’s Out Of My Life was absolutely mesmerising. You could’ve heard a pin drop in the auditorium.
The dancers’ energy was awe inspiring – particularly Christian Sharrier. That boy did not stop moving for the entirety of the show! His dancing was effortless, something I like to see on stage. I don’t like over-choreographed moves, of which there were some, but Christian reminded me of a young guy who could be spotted busting moves on the street in a scene from Beat It.
The cast member I was disappointed in was Tyrone Lee. His voice was obviously incredibly soulful, I just couldn’t hear him. His tone was far too quiet for the huge sounds of the band. His voice only suited the ballads and I didn’t enjoy his stage presence as much as his peers.
The last four songs of the night – BAD, Black or White and two the finales – left the entire audience on their feet! Clapping, moonwalking, swaying and bopping to the sounds of the night, not a face in sight wasn’t plastered with a smile. Michael Jackson left his mark on the world and now the musical of his life leaves a mark on me.