MOLLY – Sarah Harding
SAM – Andy Moss
ODA MAE – Jacqui Dubois
CARL – Sam Ferriday
WILLIE – Leo Sene
HOSPITAL GHOST – James Earl Adair
SUBWAY GHOST – Gary Lee Netly
LOUISE – Tarisha Rommick
CLARA – Simbi Aktande
Show Date: Friday 30th September 2016
Venue: Sunderland Empire
The musical version of the much loved film Ghost really does push the stage boundaries to recreate the magic that is felt in the film. I must admit that I was curious how they would manage to have one of the actors as a “ghost” for the majority of the production and it must be very strange to act with people ignoring you and not being able to make eye contact. That was certainly something I was impressed with making the audience all believe he was a ghost.
Heading into seeing the show I have to admit that after the very poor reviews Sarah Harding has been receiving I was actually impressed with the production. Not with her I must add though, yes she can sing but simply does not have the right vocal range for that role, he acting was ok but those high notes were just not possible. Which I am sure would make the show even better someone having that in their locker, doesn’t really make sense in casting though, as I think that is the case here in all honesty. The same with Andy Moss as Sam his range didn’t hit the heights either. In the softer songs they were very good.
While the two leads were massively disappointing vocally (those high notes) that did not prevent me having a total emotional breakdown when they sung Unchained Melody together, what is it about that song anyway? So that was a stand out moment.
The biggest standout had to come from Jacqui Dubois though as Ode Mae, fantastic in her very limited musical numbers (we all wanted more) but her performance was even better. She kept it all following and certainly did what Whoopi Goldberg does in the film and totally steal each and every moment she is part of, true credit to an amazing performance. Which in all honesty saved the show for me, an engaging performance.
Maybe sometimes when heading the theatre and a show has had mainly bad reviews and comments about it is a good thing? That you go in with very low expectations and then enjoy it a lot more than you ever expected. Not that I want shows to have bad reviews, it is an expensive hobby going to the theatre and we want productions to be well received and enjoyed. I have found out more this year though that it is ok to not like a production as sometimes they just aren’t for you.
I have not been put off this show and would certainly opt to see it again with different leads. It was very nice to see Sam Ferriday on stage again as I was lucky enough to catch him in Jersey Boys when that was on tour, he has an outstanding voice and was very good as Carl. Maybe just maybe he would make a better Sam? That was just a thought with how much power he seemed to have in his voice.
So if you already have tickets for this one, don’t let reviews put you off as it does have some very good songs and moments that unravel on stage. The story is exactly the same as the film as well with the bonus of the songs.