MUSICAL REVIEW: The Buddy Holly Story
The Buddy Holly Story
On the opening night of its run at The Everyman, I went to go and watch The Buddy Holly Story, a musical about the real life of Buddy, from the beginning of his career with the crickets, to his marriage, and then finally to the sad death of a plane crash at the end. What I loved the most about this production was the participation of the audience.
Now because Buddy was around during the 50's, the majority of the audience were of an older age, and throughout the whole of the 2 1/2 hours, they were clapping and singing along to every sing with as much enthusiasm and energy that they could give, and it was a joy to watch, especially at the end as they went as far as standing up in the aisles and actually dancing along.
At one point in the second act they include the audience in a little segment, were programmes for the 'Winter Dance Party' are handed out and one lucky person with a blue sticker wins a prize, which was a really nice touch to the show and made you really absorb what was going on, like you were actually transported back to the 50's. Obviously at the time of Buddy's Reign, I was alive back then, so I had no idea of how Buddy was as a person, but by what Roger put in as his portrayal of Holly, I now have a good idea of what he would be like, a gent.
Roger also just put in such an amazing performance and really held every scene he was in, especially near the end as he must of already been sweaty with all the singing and run round the stage with his guitar he does. There are quite a few scene changes which was perfectly done slickly by having radio stations play in between with news about Buddy.
One scene change that holds particular memory and was one of the strongest parts of the production was the way they conveyed Buddy's death. Halfway through one of the songs in the Winter Dance Party, it suddenly comes to an abrupt stop with a blackout, as the curtain is pulled down, to then be replaced with a mic stand and Buddy's guitar next to it, in front of the curtain, as an over play of the death being heard, before then suddenly going back to the dance party.
I could go on and talk about the relationships that Buddy has with all characters, and the talent involved in the rest of the cast, but to be perfectly honest I will always say the same thing, it was just brilliant, the only faults that I could possibly give being is a shorter act one perhaps and the technical hitches, though this was not one of the company's fault.
Overall, a brilliant show full of amazingly written songs, topped off with an enthusiastic audience. Top Notch!