London Coliseum – until 27 August 2023
Reviewed by Alec Legg
I must admit to being a fan of Queen from years back, and I really looked forward to seeing this version of ‘We Will Rock You‘ in its new incarnation. As I never saw the original I took along my friend Keith who did see the original some twenty or so years ago.
Taking our seats I saw that the audience was of all ages from senior citizens to youngsters. I did wonder what their reactions would be In the end the reaction from all ages was the same!
Firstly the sets were outstanding being a combination of the physical scenery and the lighting engineers work at their best. Each change of scenery was a marvel and a wonder to see. I think that , compared to all the shows I have seen in the past these sets took the biscuit and I would not be surprised to see awards for set design and lighting being handed out in the future!
I was told by my friend that the plot of the story was nothing like the original, being completely like a new show. So all you people out there who saw the original you must not be put off from seeing this version. I think that the Queen’s music is the only part of the show that will be recognisable but of course does this matter as the enduring magic of their music will last forever!
As to the plot the story line goes that Earth has been renamed the I-Planet and is under the control of the Killer Queen, Brenda Edwards, through her corporation, Global Soft. The only music allowed to be broadcast is that approved by them and all the worlds inhabitants have i-phones through which Global soft broadcasts.
There is a small resistance party, rebelling against Global Soft called the Bohemians, led by Ben Elton as the Rebel Leader, who are being hunted down by the agents of Global Soft. The two lead characters are Galileo, Ian McIntosh, and Scaramouche, Elena Skye, who are about to leave Gaga High school and are set apart from their fellow students by their confused and rebellious natures. The storyline is then about them trying to escape from the clutches of Global Soft and join the resistance. Ben Elton’s performance as the rebel leader must be mentioned as a tour de force!
As you would expect the music of Queen is interspersed throughout the performance and the music and songs were marvellously performed. As I said I wondered what the audience reaction would be and I can say that it was rapturous. Each song was applauded wonderfully the audience enjoying every minute. Due credit must be given to all the cast for their dancing and singing performances which were par excellence from the leads to the ensemble.
I would like to describe the ending of the play but not wishing to add a spoiler there is a wonderful surprise at the end which I am sure will be enjoyed by all.
I must relate that Sir Brian May made an appearance at the end of the show to applause which nearly lifted the roof off the theatre and. I have never heard the like before. I have now been telling all my friends, ad-nauseum, that I saw Sir Brian May LIVE!
For all you Queen fans out there and anyone else this is a must to see.
I would like to dedicate this review to the memory of Freddy Mercury, RIP, your music lives on as does our love and respect.