Dirty Rotten Scoundrels – Savoy Theatre
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels is one of the best british feeling musicals we have had for a long time. Based on the 1988 film staring Michael Caine and Steve Martin, it tells the story of a pair of scheming fraudsters Lawrence Jamieson (Robert Lindsay) and Freddy Benson (Alex Gaumound) who pair up together in a bet of who can extract the most money out of the American Soap Queen, Christine Colgate (Katherine Kingsley). Hilarity ensues until suddenly things take a turn for the worst and Christine is discovered to not been the wealthy woman they thought she was. Will the boys have a conscience and stop their bet, or will they take her for every penny she has? Go along and see the show to find out.
Opening in March 2014 at the Savoy Theatre, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels starred Rufus Hound and Samantha Bond (as Freddy and Muriel). A recent cast change has seen these replaced by Alex Gaumound (Matilda/We Will Rock You) and Bonnie Langford (been in everything). Alex is a great Freddy in the show, with all the comedy and humour the show needs. Having seen Rufus Hound play the role it is hard not to compare their quirky differences but both were just as good in their own way. Bonnie Langford has a way of moulding herself perfectly into any role she is given, perfectly embodying the character of subtle cougar Muriel who is eager to please in any way she can. Gary Wilmot takes on the role of French assistant Andre (previously played by John Marquez) and does a surprisingly convincing French accent and a good job in the role. My favourite character however is cowgirl Jolene. The simple, southern belle is blind to Lawrence’s attempts to scare her off after she plans a wedding behind his back and Lizzy Connelly gives the stand out performance of the show with Oklahoma, where she shows the boys really who is boss.
The music in this show is catchy, it’s fun and it fits perfectly with the theme of the show. I would definitely buy a cast recording and it’s sad that it doesn’t sound like there is one in the pipeline at this time. Big numbers like ‘Give Them What They Want’ and ‘Great Big Stuff’ have huge choreographed dance routines to them, whereas ‘What Was A Woman To Do’ and ‘The More We Dance’ have a slower sultry feel. ‘Like Zis/Like Zat’ is a great comedy number between Andre and Muriel and well, I could talk about how great every single song in this show is but I should stop!
With rumours circulating that the Chichester Festival production of Gypsy (starring Imelda Staunton) could have its eyes set on the Savoy Theatre in March next year, you may not have long left to catch this show in the West End so I highly recommend you book your tickets now to see this brilliant, fun show before its too late. A UK tour is already scheduled for next year and so if you’re not in London make sure you look for a town near you where it is playing. A great big show with a huge twist that makes me squeal with delight every time I think about it!
Reviewed by West End Wilma
Dirty Rotten Scoundrels is booking until 7 March 2015 at the Savoy Theatre. Click here to get top price tickets for just £35