White Christmas review - November 2014
White Christmas is the perfect slice of classic ChristmasThere is never a time that I am not “dreaming of a white Christmas.” I bloomin’ love Christmas and start getting the crazy eyed kind of excited the minute the fireworks stop on November the 5th, which worked out perfectly for my trip to see White Christmas just a week later.
For those of you that don’t know, White Christmas is a stage adaptation of the classic 1950’s film starring Danny Kaye and Bing Crosby. London audiences are treated to the fabulous Tom Chambers and Aled Jones as Phil Davis and Bob Wallace in this show, with Aled providing his knockout vocals and Chambers throwing some serious shapes into the mix. The pair really are a duo of dreams and the strength of their partnership is the key to this show’s success.
The Chambers/Jones venture isn’t the only dynamic duo on stage; in fact there are many! Rachel Stanley and Louise Bowden shine as the Haynes Sisters and Wendi Peters and Graham Cole are delightful as Martha Watson and General Henry Waverly. Amy Snudden was also an exceptionally cute and respectably sassy Little Susan!
As I watched Phil Cole’s Ezekiel, I was reminded how a good actor can make a small role a stand out one. With a simple “Ah, yep” Cole managed to win over the audience, gaining some of the biggest laughs of the evening!
Irving Berlin’s music is undoubtedly the highlight of White Christmas. It is a true joy to listen to classic 50’s music sung in the classic way and numbers such as "Snow," "Blue Skies" and of course "White Christmas" were persistently blissful!
Similarly delightful is Randy Skinner’s choreography; big ensemble numbers were truly rousing and more intimate routines were breathtaking (hello “The Best Things Happen When You’re Dancing!”) Coupled with Berlin’s music, Anna Louizo’s designs and Carrie Robbin’s costumes, the show looks and sounds like the real deal. These theatrical elements worked together seamlessly and packed a fantastic punch in the upbeat “We Love a Piano” as well as the obvious show closer which was filled with wow factor.
If I were to be a true scrooge, my only criticism is that the book isn’t exactly the most thought provoking and does lack a certain depth, however you won’t find me practicing my bah-humbugs as this really isn’t a big deal. Yes, White Christmas is glossy, but it is what it is and goes about its business unashamedly.
Watching White Christmas is a lot like looking in to a beautiful scene in a classic Christmas snow globe; sure it might not depict reality, but it certainly looks beautiful and gets you feeling all sentimental inside. White Christmas is the perfect slice of classic Christmas (just like the ones you used to know…#sorrynotsorry.) If you are looking for something jolly to fill you with festive cheer, this show is definitely for you!
12 November 2014, Dominion Theatre