Featuring the many queens of SIX, Episode 2 of the West End Musical Drive In is a powerful collection of musical theatre performances
“I remember that night I just might”
The first instalment of the West End Musical Drive In impressed me with its raw urgency, a timely reminder of the power of 100% live vocals and the breadth of musical theatre talent that we have in this country. So it is great that the folks behind West End Musical Brunch are continuing to release more of the drive-in concerts that they hosted last summer.
This week’s episode brings together 11 of the performers from various casts of the musical Six and with such a greater number of singers, the programming is certainly eclectic and ultimately does feel a little bit scattershot in its choices, lacking a little of the thematic unity that marked out last week’s showcase.
That’s not to say there isn’t a lot to enjoy here. Grace Mouat’s chirpy hosting is admirable in such an unforgiving arena and her contributions to the setlist (& Juliet’s ‘Confident’ in particular) match that energetic vibe. I loved Courtney Stapleton’s rendition of Beetlejuice’s ‘Home’ too, along with Jodie Steele and Sophie Isaacs nailing Wicked’s iconic ‘For Good’.
Shekinah McFarlane probably steals the show with a hugely charismatic take on Hamilton’s ‘Satisfied’ (aka the greatest modern musical theatre song – yeah, I said it). But I’d argue that some of the other choices weren’t as strong, Gypsy sits awkwardly in the mix and if you go for ‘Over the Rainbow’, you really need to make your mark. But over two hours, definitely more hits than misses.