My Fair Lady
Remember to “wash yer han’s an face be-four yer com” to the best slice of fun this Spring.
Returning to the stage after a hiatus of what feels like ages, My Fair Lady is the quintessential musical with all the hallmarks of brilliance; wonderful costumes, brilliant score and fabulous acting.
The story of a poor flower girl, plucked from the world she knows and thrust into the higher echelons of middle class has led to countless movie remakes including Trading Places, She’s All That and even Pretty Woman, but it is the original and for many the best version that we get to enjoy in this tour.
The cast includes Michael D. Xavier as a wonderfully aloof Henry Higgins, Charlotte Kennedy as the innocent yet strong Eliza Doolittle, Adam Woodyatt as the brilliant father Alfred P. Doolittle and John Middleton as steadfast Colonel Pickering.
Charlotte’s wicked cockney accent, complete with feigned offence at every misunderstanding is the ideal foil for Michael Xavier’s perfect diction and delivery. That she undergoes such a believable metamorphosis (and yet still keeps the slightest little twangs of her heritage) is complete testament to her acting abilities. The will they won’t they feeling between pupil and teacher never strays to the ‘icky’ side – quite the opposite as Eliza grows to realise she doesn’t need someone like ‘enry ‘iggins to make it in her life, indeed it is more the professor who comes to appreciate he needs her.
For many, Adam Woodyatt will always be known as Ian Beale (Eastenders) but his rendition of ‘I’m Getting Married in the Morning’ and the surreal, drunken stag night routine shows that perhaps we have been deprived of this great actor from our stages for too long.
Massive praise goes to set designer Michael Yeargan for some truly amazing production values and innovative style The Higgins household is packed with nuances and details, perfect for the cluttered mind of the brilliant professor, but then compared with the pared back elegance of Mrs Higgins garden villa.
Directed by Bartlett Sher, this sublime production has rightly won heaps of awards (Tony Award for Best Costume Design, 5 Outer Critics’ Circle Awards including Best Musical Revival, the Drama League Award for Outstanding Musical Revival, and the Drama Desk Awards for Best Musical Revival and Costume Design)
Playing until Saturday February 11th you should treat yourself to this 5 star Lerner and Loewe classic; it’ll be lov-er-lee if you do.