Tuesday, 1 October 2019

Review: Priscilla Queen of the Desert

Having never seen this show but interviewing Jason Donovan twice about it (once back when he was Mitzi and more recently as a producer of the show), it was time to go see what all the fuss was about – boy (or ladies!) were we in for a treat! I had very high expectations for this musical to be up there as one of the best, though a small part of me was worried it was going to be a bit cheesy with a story that loosely wove together some of our favourite classics from the eighties. Well, that worry was a complete waste of time, the story is brilliant, the music is superb and the staging and costumes are dazzlingly classy. These queens are in for the ride of their lives – and so is the audience.
Priscilla is the queen of the dessert, she’s their temperamental tour bus and together Mitzi, Bernadette and Felicia travel across the Australian outback to put on the show of a lifetime. This show is about how they get there with lots of little stories woven in about their backgrounds, some surprises and some quirky or bigoted characters along the way. It’s about love, friendship, fatherhood, identity and acceptance with some fabulous musical numbers and raucously funny moments.
The three lead characters are played by Joe McFadden, Miles Western and Nick Hayes. Each of them stole the show in their own way, Miles plays the transgender character of Bernadette, whilst Nick plays the super flamboyant Adam (Drag name Felicia) and Joe is Tick (Drag name Felicia) finding his own way in this world. The main message of this show is about the acceptance of everyone for who they are without judgement or violence and to celebrate the diversity and kindness of people no matter who they are (or what they choose to wear). Priscilla takes on many stigmas that the LGBTQ+ community deal with on a daily basis, even in today’s modern world, and sticks it's finger up at them.
You also really cannot go wrong with so much colour, glitter, sequins, feathers, outrageous headpieces and smash hits such as It’s Raining Men, What’s Love Got to Do With It, I Will Survive and Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, each with perfectly choreographed dance routines. The stage set was really exciting too with lots of different scenes, the tour bus and one of my favourites was how they showed one of their performances from backstage – clever and funny.
Kings and Queens – go see this show!
Running until 5th October at Milton Keynes Theatre. For tickets, head to www.atgtickets.com

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