Review: Big

The Dominion Theatre is a massive space, it is one of the largest auditoriums in London and it is currently home to Big which has a limited run there starring Jay McGuinness in the Tom Hanks role alongside Kimberley Walsh from Girls Aloud, Matthew Kelly from Stars in Their Eyes and Wendi Peters from Corrie. I saw it on Monday in previews and was pleasantly surprised.  I was expecting something more akin to a jukebox musical so was happy when I saw that it was a score with original songs. 

The set is beautiful evoking the suburbs where Josh lives, the city of New York as well as specific interior scenes with the use of a revolve for some nice effects.  None of the songs are particularly memorable but the enthusiasm of the dance numbers and the energy of the ensemble is infectious. 

Jay McGuinness can dance, as we learnt on Strictly and I knew he was in the Wanted but I hadn’t realised he was the singer and his voice is great, there was just one moment where I felt the song went out of his range.  Kimberley Walsh was very accomplished.

The show is fun and beautifully put together and yes the keyboard sequence is there although it felt a bit rough at the edges.  The story is familiar and it is mostly done well there’s just some song lyrics which have not aged well and the storyline is problematic in places, but then the story always was problematic.

Shout out to the Secretary who ruthlessly stole every scene she was in.

Jane Hanmer

Born in deepest darkest Shropshire. Currently living in Durrey. A reader of books, a watcher of theatre and film, a player of board games. Intersectional Feminist Pronouns: She/her

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