The Blues Brothers are alive, kicking and performing in Manchester this week at the Palace Theatre. It might not be Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi up there on stage, but they are decent imitations.
Daniel Fletcher (Elwood) and Brad Renshaw (Jake) share the spirit of the original in this high energy, fast paced show. Both are vocally capable, and Fletcher does a good job in recapturing the deadpan persona of Aykroyd's creation.
The two leads share the majority of the songs and are happy belting out the well-known tracks but the real stand out numbers are the two slow blues songs sung by Renshaw and a slowed down version of "Under the Boardwalk" led by Fletcher.
The 'brothers' are capably backed by the Bluettes - Jocasta Almgill, Alexus Ruth and Vicky Goddard. They are also each given an opportunity to showcase their voices as is ASM/understudy Luke Jasztal. There is also a seven piece band under the directorship of David Foster, who make sure that the music is powerful enough to rock the auditorium.
This never pretends to be more than a concert tribute to the seventies and eighties musical comedy creation, and as such the set is a concert stage and costumes are designed the same way. However both are adequate although not outstanding.
This could never be described as a sophisticated night out, but it's certainly a great deal of fun for those who attend.