Last night, I was invited along to see Dr Dolittle The Musical at The Lowry, in Salford. The show is part of the original Film’s 50th anniversary celebrations. This new production features music and lyrics by double Academy Award-winner Leslie Bricusse, and is directed by Christopher Renshaw.
Dr Dolittle The Musical Cast:
There is no shortage of familiar names and faces in this production… The lead role of Dr Dolittle belongs to the wonderful Mark Williams. He is well known for playing Mr Weasley in the Harry Potter series, of course. Williams is joined by Brian Capron, who is best known for playing Gail Platt’s Murderous partner, Richard Hillman in Coronation Street. Capron plays both Albert Blossom and Straight Arrow in Dr Dolittle. Vicky Entwistle made Janice Battersby a household name on the Coronation Street cobbles. She plays Polynesia the Parrot.
They are joined by Adèle Anderson as Lady Bellowes and Poison Arrow, Mollie Melia-Redgrave as Emma Fairfax and Patrick Sullivan as Matthew Mugg. The role of Tommy Stubbins is being shared by 3 young boys during the run, two of whom are local. The ensemble is made up of well over 20 other actors and puppeteers, who together create one magical production.
The set is incredibly well thought out. Books open up to become houses, and the ensemble bring the pages of the book to life through movement. The colours, logistics and style are amazing, and the entire thing is beautiful.
The costumes are brilliant, and are true to the time period, while being great to look at too.
I read in the online information that the show featured puppets, but I was not expecting them to be such incredible creations. The dog in particular was scarily lifelike, and the puppeteers did a fantastic job of bringing them to life, without their presence on stage being distracting.
The detail was astounding, and all of them both moved and looked just like their living counterparts. Throughout the performance, the cast are searching for a “Giant Pink Snail”. Judging from the audible gasps in the audience when he eventually appeared on stage, I don’t think any of us were expecting him to be quite THIS big…
Without giving the plot away, I can say with 100% certainty that the performance as a whole is incredible. Despite the time of year, this show is not a pantomime. There’s no expense spared on the set or costume front, and the actors definitely aren’t amateurs. The dancers perform well and the overall result is a fun, family friendly show.
My One Word Review:
If I had to review the show in just one word, I’d choose “Brilliant”. I asked my friend, who accompanied me what her one word review would be, and she chose “Fun”. I think our smiles say it all!
Tickets And Dates:
Dr Dolittle The Musical is running in the Lowry from 13th December 2018 until 5th January 2019. Tickets start from £16 per person, and there is a relaxed performance on Friday 4th January – perfect for special needs families! There is also a British Sign Language performance on Saturday 5th January. Find out more about the accessible services here.
All told, I think the show was fantastic. So much so, I am trying to work out logistics to take the kids to the relaxed performance on 4th January. (My son has Autism and I know the regular performances will be too much for him).
Still not convinced? Why not watch the show’s promotional youtube video to see exactly what’s in store!
We were given complementary tickets to Dr Dolittle The Musical for the purpose of this review.
Finally: to find out what else is going on in Salford over the festive period, check out this blog post.