Kinky Boots - 5 September 2017 Review

"sassy and sparkly"

Based on the 2005 feature film starring Chiwetel Ejiofor and Joel Edgerton, Kinky Boots tells the tale of shoe factory Price and Son in England's Northampton, which is at risk of being closed down because they've been out-marketed by cheaper alternatives. The only way Charlie Price (David Hunter) can save the factory is if he follows in the footsteps of similar companies and finds a new niche market.

That's where flamboyant drag queen Lola (Simon-Anthony Rhoden) comes in, who is in desperate need of a pair of knee-high boots that can support the weight of a man while at the same time keeping the feminine design and towering, spiky heels he adores so much. It's a challenge Charlie is eager to accept to take his mind off the pain of his father's recent passing, which has left him so suddenly in charge of the family-run business – a responsibility he is not sure he is cut out for...

Kinky Boots is sassy and sparkly, and its greatest strength lies in the catchy score by pop legend Cyndi Lauper (yes, the one and only). Poppy tunes such as "Everybody Say Yeah" and "Raise You Up/Just Be" are balanced by powerful showstoppers like "Land of Lola" and even quieter, more soulful numbers such as "Charlie's Soliloquy".



Though, I have to admit, my favourite song in the show has always been the immensely hilarious "The History of Wrong Guys" in which factory worker Lauren details her disastrous dating history and why her crush on Charlie is oh so very wrong. And Verity Rushworth's portrayal of this loveable character was spot-on, having the entire audience in stitches in her shining moment.

The book by Harvey Fierstein follows very closely in the footsteps of the original movie, but having the wonderful score by Cyndi Lauper and the tight choreography by Broadway's Jerry Mitchell added into the mix, they have transformed this into true West End-worthy showstopper. The musical sparkles and shines in all the right places, and it heartwarming underlying message leaves its audience with a warm and fuzzy feeling.

Even two years into this production in London, Kinky Boots received a full standing ovation at the end, which a true testimony to its dazzling execution and how this feel-good show about acceptance of others and yourself still resonates with people today.



Reviewed by Zarina de Ruiter from Page to Stage Reviews.
5 September 2017, Adelphi Theatre
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Booking until 24 March 2018