Mary Poppins Birmingham Hippodrome Review
Mary Poppins Stage Show – Birmingham Hippodrome Review
I am not sure I have met anyone that doesn’t know the word Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious and the story of Mary Poppins, the worlds favourite Nanny, is renowned the world over, so does the stage show live up to the musical magic of the original film?
In one word. Yes! And then some. (Okay that was four words).
The musical has all your favourite songs from the original film, although not necessarily where you are expecting them to be and I think that is part of its appeal. The musical does not remain entirely true to the film, but its story and stage adaptation keeps us spellbound throughout the entire performance. Having read the programme after the show, it seems that the stage show is closer to the original stories by P L Travers.
As a former dancer, I was captivated by the production and choreography, by the legendary Cameron Mackintosh and Matthew Bourne, with the “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” and “Step in Time” sequences being nothing short of mesmerising.
The set continued to change and adapt throughout the show, with an explosion of colour and special effects changing the visuals in an instant.
The new songs such as “Being Mrs Banks” and the hypnotic “Anything Can Happen” nestle naturally next to the classics such as “A Spoonful of Sugar” and “Jolly Holiday”. The performances of Zizi Strallen as Mary and Matt Lee as Bert were perfectly cast, with the stunts that they both perform being nothing short of breath taking. Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke are fairly big shoes to fill and I was unsure whether I would warm to them at first but their mannerisms and performances encapsulate the characters perfectly.
With such a collective of talent on the stage, it is difficult to identify a stand out performance but Grainne Renihan as the Bird Woman singing “Feed the Birds” gave me goose bumps (that were in no way related to a fear of pigeons).
Cameron Mackintosh believes that the stage musical that P L Travers always wanted has now been created, which just goes to show that anything really can happen ….. if you let it.
If there is one thing you need to do before the 23rd April 2016 it is to go and see Mary Poppins at the Birmingham Hippodrome. Get the kids to raid their piggy banks, don’t have a takeaway or that meal out, buy tickets and be completely captivated by the magic of Mary Poppins. Go on, spit spot!
See the trailer here: http://www.birminghamhippodrome.com/calendar/mary-poppins/#trailer