Closer Than Ever is a lovely little 1989 Off-Broadway Musical, receiving its European Premiere at the Jermyn Street Theatre in Piccadilly Circus. The show features no dialogue but songs that all serve as separate pieces, dealing with topics from ageing/mid life crises to working couples and unrequited love. ‘You Want To Be My Friend’, ‘Miss Byrd’ and ‘Back on Base’ stood out for me amongst all of the tunes (and there were a lot of them, 26 in fact). The show has no overall story to it and so at times feels like it is dragging because it is just song after song with no real indication of how much longer is left. It could possibly work better as a one act show because during the interval I knew that nothing was really going to happen during the second half and it would be much the same as what I had already seen.
The lovely thing about Closer Than Ever is that all four cast members are of a mature age but are championing the fact that it’s not just the youngsters who can still put on a show in the West End! For this reason alone, the show should be seen. Supporting the youth of today is important but its nice to give some praise to the older ones too! Sophie Louise Dann is soon to be joining the cast of Forbidden Broadway at the Menier Chocolate Factory and this is easy to understand with the comedy that shows in her performance. Fans of the TV show Bread may remember Graham Bickley as Joey Boswell (1989-1991) but he is also a well established west end performer including Sunset Boulevard alongside Petula Clark. Arvid Larsen is known for playing Jesus on the 2001 UK tour of Jesus Christ Superstar. The stand out performer of this show though is Issy van Randwyck, with her carrot-couture (I know thats not the right spelling but I thought it was funny) expressions and Rene Zellweger resemblance. Issy spent five years performing in Fascinating Aida from 1994.
Closer Than Ever is a nice piece of theatre to ease yourself in to the start of the week. So why not pop along and check it out?
Reviewed by West End Wilma
Closer than ever is on at the Jermyn Street Theatre until Saturday 7 June. Click here to book tickets.