I don't need a thesaurus here; the only word I'm looking for is 'poor'. Pellow's performance was abhorrent, and not in a good Hyde-ish way, in a plain bad singing a lame acting way. I almost laughed out loud when a group of middle aged women actually gave him a standing ovation following a feeble 'This is the Moment'. Clearly shallow 'Wet Wet Wet' fans who scarcely see the inside of a theatre. I've seen outstanding performances get less then that. The set was, to me, passable but a bit dull with the overuse of two slide on doorways like cardboard cutouts on a playset. The other performers did their best with downright pantomime direction (bar Pellow and one overcamp board member) but couldn't save the badly scripted, executed and composed (the tunes were as dead as Hyde's victims) show. - AFB
26 Jun 11
Saw the show in Norwich last week and Marti Pellow was stunning - his voice is amazing. The supporting cast all had great voices and overall the show was value for money entertainment. The actual music, apart from one or two songs, was rather repetitive. Nevertheles a packed theatre gave the performance a standing ovation. The production itself was excellent. - Patricia
13 Jun 11
Jekyll & Hyde, the show, is almost as bipolar as its eponymous protagonist. It's hugely derivative, particularly of Phantom and Les Mis, but it's based on a highly theatrical melodrama and boasts four songs which stand comparison with any written over the past thirty years. Despite being a success on Broadway the show has never appeared in the West End but it has been a guilty pleasure of mine since the last UK tour and I had high hopes for this Bill Kenwright production, hence the trip to Tunbridge Wells. The score, which has moments of genuine greatness, is superbly performed by Tom de Keyser and an augmented orchestra, but the show lacks any sense of horror, particularly in a horribly botched ending which lacks any tension. Worst of all there is a stunningly awful lead performance from Marti Pellow. He simply can't act, most of what he says or sings is incomprehensible and demonstrates the difference between singing pop and musical theatre - he has the worst breath control I have ever heard. At least he made a decent job of 'This is the Moment' and (I think) doesn't mime like Paul Nicholas reputedly did last time. The previous touring production was when we first discovered Louise Dearman who gave a brilliant performance as the doomed prostitute Lucy - it only took the West End another five years to realise Louise is a genuine star. Sabrina Carter sings well but doesn't deliver the heartbreaking desperation for 'A New Life' that makes Lucy's fate so tragic. I am convinced that a truly great production of Jekyll and Hyde is possible, perhaps with dream casting of Michael ball, Louise and Emma Williams, but sadly Bill Kenwright and Martin Connor failed to deliver it. - David Baxter
05 Jun 11
Pellow's performance was dire, his acting was atrocious and his singing didn't fit the character of Hyde at all, whilst his Jekyll singing voice wasn't bad it wasn't amazing. Ultimately though it is the director who has failed us here. The director chose an odd mish mash of pantomime and shock. For example, in alive Hyde hid a child in a basket, popped some balloons and pushed an ice-cream into a Childs face, then in murder murder Hyde popped out to say "Don't look at me". Now I am sorry but Jekyll and Hyde is a gothic horror, how can pantomime work with horror? It doesn't. The scene where the lead prostitute dies is incredibly dark and clashes against these comedic scenes. This direction was so terribly bad I faceplamed numerous times. Also please may somebody tell me why alive was so mellow? It should be grand and truly express hyde's evil nature!
Also let it be known, this isn't the broadway production, whilst it uses some of the same songs there are some which are omitted, some which are added and some which are altered slightly. Overall its ok but I prefer the broadway production. Good and evil is far better than bring on the men. But the alive reprise in this version is pretty awesome....if only Pellow could do a better Hyde.
Anyway, the show did have some good features, the two women leads were fantastic and the confrontation scene was quite good with the mirror, allthough the screen in the window just seemed tacky.
So whilst the play had some good points Pellow and the awful direction taken really ruin what could have been a great performance. If I were you I would give it a miss and wait for a better production to come along.
19 May 11
went to see this in Sheffield tonight and agree that the lyrics were dire - a whole musical written in rhyming couplets! most of the cast bravely gave it their best but Marti Pellow's acting was simply not up to his singing. A chorus of "wishing I was lucky" would have improved this awful musical immensely. I only got my husband to go back in after the interval by pointing out that I had left my jacket at my seat. Low point - hearing "eyes" and "lies" rhyme for the 50th time; high point - great 'our cow Molly' ice-cream! - Fran
27 Apr 11
I went to see this in Sheffield last night and it would appear Marti Pellow hasn't improved with a change of venue.
To say he was bobbins is putting it mildly. I thought the rest of the cast, especially the two leading ladies, were very entertaining (although the 'camp' member of the Board of Trustees (forget his name) was so OTT it was irritating).
Back to Marti, his dialogue sounded like his false teeth were falling out and his singing (other than when he was belting it out) was hilarious. In fact my wife and I spoke to each other in the same tuneless mumbling for the rest of the evening.
It must be gauling for the rest of the cast to have to give way to him at the final curtain!
The set was quite good though but that's no compensation. - Stuart N
27 Apr 11
Fantastic show last night. All the cast are brilliant and Marti gave a very emotional performance last night. Having seen the preview show in Bromley this production has really grown and there were some nice added touches. The sound from my seat in the circle was fantastic and stand out songs for me was 'Take Me As I Am' and 'This Is The Moment' both sent shivers down my spine! - Angela
27 Mar 11
I think the reviewer must have seen a different show than the one I watched last night at the Palace.
Pellow's lack of acting ability was apparent throughout, and his singing wasn't particularly brilliant.
The physical production is, I thought, not bad. Good set, lit well, and a cracking little band, but the material is so poor. Naffest lyrics I have ever heard in a musical.....
"Read about the 'ideous murder,
Profane, religious murder!
The poor old bishop,
What a shock!
Seen walkin' wiv 'is daughter,
A moment prior to slaughter!
The shepherd tendin' to 'is flock!
'E died in a London slum -
A slave to martyrdom -
'E died without complaint! -
'E should be made a saint! -
'E's gone back 'ome to God! -
It all seems very odd! -
Why should it be,
This mystery? -"
Need I go on?
On the plus side, Sabrina Carter rocks!!!
- M George
26 Mar 11
I found the show a great evening's entertainment!I thought Marti Pellow put across a gentle and perturbed Dr Jekyll very well indeed and his Mr Hyde was deliciously evil! His vocal ability is undeniably outstanding, with this Is The Moment being the highlight of the show for me. The 2 leading ladies were very strong as well. I think the show deserves a place in the West End-well done to all! - Mary
26 Mar 11
I read another review that stated that Marti Pellow was like a puppet with his strings cut and I have to agree. His acting leaves much to be desired. I was impressed with his voice, but really his wooden and unemotional actions detracted from anything that was good about his vocal performance. The two leading ladies were far more impressive. It is a shame as Jeckyll and Hyde spend much of the show alone on stage and I found myself watching the signer to the right of the stage more than Marti Pellow... now he was very entertaining! Having said all that, I loved the set design and I thought the band was great too. - Red
25 Mar 11
Oh my life. I am an avid theatre-goer and I have never seen a production as poor in my life!
The 2 lead females were stand out performers.
But I felt the performances from the rest of the cast were woeful and flat!
Marti Pellow was simply pathetic! All he did was walk around the stage and talk with no emotion or variety in his voice. In the sung dialogue, I felt his straining actions just weren't in character at all!
I laughed at every single opportunity that was there.
I was made to stay until the end of the performance. - Ben Cusick
24 Mar 11
Marti Pellow was a great let down to this other wise great production. One could only feel sorry for the two amazing leading ladies, Sarah Earnshaw and Sabrina Carter. Pellow's performance was pantomeish and poor from his singing, if it can be called that, to his acting. So much so that it was ard to try and conceal our laughter! - Mark Smith
22 Mar 11
Agree with most of the comments however this production is not without it's failings. At times it lacked pace especially during the "Murder" montage and finale. Sarah Earnshaw's voice could not compete with Sabrina Carters in the emotionally charged "In His Eyes" duet. The transformations between Jekyll & Hyde could have been more dramatic but on the whole the set is a great improvement on the 2004 touring production and it was a great production of a fantastic musical - Gary Soppitt
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