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  • Writer's pictureandybram69

Kinky Boots by DOS

Kinky Boots is a jubilant musical that knocks down prejudice with a flamboyant high kick.


This feel-good story, nestled amidst the grit of a failing shoe factory, is a testament to the power of self-acceptance and embracing what makes you unique.


Staying true to the essence of the 2005 movie by Geoff Deane and Tim Firth (and amazingly inspired by mostly true events), Kinky Boots follows the unwilling Charlie Price (Ben Connor / Nicholas Fletcher-Holmes)  as he inherits a struggling shoe factory from his father (Julian Cound)and forms an unlikely partnership with cabaret performer and drag queen Lola (Leighton Taylor-Jones) to produce a line of high-heeled boots and ultimately save the business.  Set in the stoic north west where prejudices are not meant to hurt, they are just the ‘way things are’, both Charlie and Lola realise they are not so very different.

As is always to be expected from a Darlington Operatic Society production, this is packed with fabulous performances, stunning costumes (a visual feast, exploding with colour and glitter, perfectly complementing the larger-than-life personalities on stage) and awe-inspiring choreography.  The energy from the whole cast never fades, taking the audience on a roller coaster ride of emotions, belly aching laughs and some tear-jerking pathos, led by Director Joanne Hand and the brilliant orchestra.

To play the lead needs much more than just to look good in heels and sequins and the charismatic Taylor-Jones’ dazzling Lola is sure to leave everyone wanting more – uber-confident on the outside, vulnerable and unsure on the inside, this is probably Leighton’s greatest role (which, given his history of phenomenal performance is saying something.)

Cyndi Lauper's music is a vibrant mix of pop and soul, with infectious numbers like "Hold Me in Your Heart" and the show-stopping "Land of Lola" that will have you tapping your toes (or maybe even dancing in the aisles!).


While the plot might be predictable, the journey is thoroughly entertaining. Kinky Boots doesn't shy away from tackling themes of prejudice and self-doubt, but it balances them with humour and optimism, ultimately delivering a message of hope and acceptance.

Whether you're a musical theatre aficionado or a casual theatregoer looking for a night of fun, Kinky Boots is sure to put a smile on your face and leave you with a spring in your step. Just be prepared to be dazzled!


On a personal note, reviewing Darlington Operatic Society was my very 1st ‘gig’ and over the past 12+ years I have had the distinct pleasure & honour to cover so many of their wonderful productions – their genuine passion for performing is matched only by the pleasure their shows bring to audiences young & old. 


It feels quite fitting that as my last review I can bow out having witnessed another brilliant performance – thank you all and long may you continue.

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