Be prepared to be 'enchanted once again' with Beauty and the Beast

Be prepared to be 'enchanted once again' with Beauty and the Beast

by Henry James (September 2021)

Beauty and the Beast

Liverpool Empire

DISNEY musicals always deliver, Beauty and the Beast is no exception.

It has everything audiences will expect, including familiar songs, colourful sets, strong characters and amazing special effects.

This touring production will be at the Liverpool Empire until Saturday, October 16. The show, which was first debuted on Broadway 26 years ago, has been completely reimagined.

The highlight of the production is the rendition of Be Our Guest at the end of the first half, which lasts for about 20 minutes and is performed by Lumiere (Gavin Lee), Mrs Potts (Sam Bailey) Madame (Samantha Bingley) and the Ensemble.

The audience were clapping and singing along to this on the night I went to watch the show. It is like a number from the production, 42nd Street. There is a terrific energy to all the dancers here.

The Beast (Emmanuel Kojo) dominates the stage, as his character needs to do. He proves his versatility as well, as he brings some humour to his role in certain scenes.

Courtney Stapleton is Belle and she performs well throughout the show.

Gaston (Tom Senior) admires Belle only for her beauty, and he is charming on the surface, but there is menace underneath the facade.

The music is by Alan Menken, Howard Ashman and Tim Rice. The numbers Beauty and the Beast and Be Our Guest are now classic musical songs. The orchestra in this production is expertly led by the musical director and conductor Jonathan Gill.

Be prepared to be enchanted all over again. This is a delight for audiences both young and old. 9/10

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