Sheffield Lyceum – until 26 May 2018
I’ll be honest, I have a soft spot for Titanic the Musical. It’s one of my favourites and Maury Yeston’s musical score is one of the most beautiful in any show. Danielle Tarento’s production hi-lights the superb cast of voices and this show is particular is just begging to be made into a soundtrack CD.
This is, however, very much an ensemble piece with no one star. The whole cast work well together and you find yourself hoping that all will survive as you become so invested in the characters. There are some stand out moments though – the delight on the face of Alice Beane (Claire Machin) as she manages to dance with the rich and famous of the day after sneaking into the First Class only Tea Dance. Ida and Isidor Straus dressing up in the finest clothes and dancing tight in each other’s arms knowing death was imminent but refusing to give up each other after a lifetime together. The needless suicide of William Murdoch (Keiran Brown) after he blamed himself for the disaster. The relentless cheerfulness of the Bell Boy (Lewis Cornay) and Lightoller (the outstandingly vocal Alistair Barron) taking over to try and salvage the ship, crew and passengers in the face of disaster.
Titanic is one of the most iconic stories of the last century: a terrible misadventure which cost some 1517 lives, thanks to the inadequate provision of lifeboats to make room for more first class accommodation, while the third class passengers below decks found themselves prevented from accessing the lifeboats at all. The outcome of this makes for a particularly powerful scene in Act 2, with ship designer Thomas Andrews (Greg Castiglioni), Captain Edward Smith (Philip Rham) and ship owner J.Bruce Ismay (Simon Green) singing and refusing to take “The Blame”.
Despite knowing the ultimate ending the actual ending, discovering who lived and who died is incredibly powerful and the list of the dead that comes down at the end brings home the fact that is a real tragedy that just maybe could been averted in different circumstances.
Titanic the Musical is an emotional powerhouse of a show. Take plenty of tissues because you will need them, I was in tears from “Godspeed Titanic” in Act 1 and could barely see the stage for tears by the reprise in Act 2.
In Sheffield until Saturday 26 May and on tour around the UK this is a show that must not be missed