Review of Kerry Ellis at Theatre Severn

Reporter:

Michael Jenkins

KERRY Ellis and her band performed their penultimate performance of the 13 date tour, in Shrewsbury’s Theatre Severn on Saturday (October 18).
 
A performance that will remain with myself forever; it was one that appealed to everybody. With outstanding arrangements of well known musical theatre, pop and rock by the talented pianist, composer and musical director, Craig Adams, with backing singing and live instrumentation, this gig was absolutely hypnotic.
 
Kerry took the audience through a journey of her career, performing numbers from many of the shows that she’s starred in, including Wicked, We Will Rock You and Oliver to name a few.
 
As always Kerry gave a totally breathtaking performance with some small, but stunning costume changes, spectacular harmonies and note perfect instrumentation, all segued with amazing anecdotes of her life and career as a musical theatre superstar and now mother.
 
The evening started with a compilation of Bond hits, from ‘Goldfinger’ to ‘Skyfall’, delivered with complete vocal ease and oozing style, Kerry demonstrated why her solo show ‘Kerry Ellis at the Palladium’ has been nominated for ‘UK Theatrical Event of the Year 2014’.
 
Throughout the evening Kerry performed numbers from her new solo album, which is available now; including a song called ‘Alfie’, dedicated to her one-year-old child.
 
These truly touching moments continued as the evening progressed, in the second half we were spoilt with a performance from the Rock Choir, a choir built up of non-professionals who share the love for vibrating their vocal folds and occasionally treading the boards.
 
The choir as well as performing a solo number, supported Kerry as she sung her finale number, a new arrangement of ‘Let it Go’ from Disney’s Frozen, with stunning textures and detailed dynamics, the choir assisted Kerry in performing in my opinion, the best version of this song, ending with Kerry belting the very high, top E flat.
 
Rock Choir leader, Kathryn Davies said: "Kerry was just a joy to perform with and I consider it a real honour to be asked.
 
"Kerry and her team were so lovely and made us feel very comfortable, which just added to the whole experience, performing with a live band just topped it all off."
 
The Rock Choir are made up of members from across Cheshire, Chester, Knutsford, Nantwich and Warrington and are part of the UK wide Rock Choir which is celebrating its 10th year this year.
 
For me, the real majestic performances came from Kerry’s musical theatre repertoire, with my absolute favourite being her vamped up version of ‘Take that look off your face’ from Andrew Lloyd Webber’s ‘Tell me on a Sunday’.
 
Kerry’s ability to inhabit characters so truthfully alongside her stunning vocals, allowed us to revisit the many roles she has undertaken in the West End and Broadway.
 
Accompanied by a comfortable and modern theatre, this performance was utterly unforgettable.
 
I must add that I was somewhat disappointed that Kerry didn’t don her witch hat, paint her face green and sing ‘Defying Gravity’ but with that said I’m sure we’ll see her back in the Land of Oz’ very soon.

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