REVIEW: Sirens of the Silver Screen (Tabard Theatre) ★★★
A sweet show in a sweet theatre.
Written and performed by Beth Burrows, this is a homage to three of Hollywood’s brightest stars – Judy Garland, Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe. Dressing in some of their most iconic outfits and singing their most famous songs, Burrows seeks to channel these three screen goddesses.
First up is Judy Garland and Burrows takes to the stage wearing a blue and white gingham pinafore dress, slips on some ruby slippers and gives us her best “Somewhere over the Rainbow”. The beauty of this song is its simplicity and Garland’s performance of it in the Wizard of Oz is notable for her stripped down delivery. Burrows’ over exaggerated acting of the song detracts from what is a very competent voice. After this rather shaky start Burrows appears to relax much more into the show.
There is a clever mix of original video (nicely projected on to the changing screen behind which Burrows swaps outfits) spoken anecdotes and songs.
Burrow’s presents a good Audrey Hepburn although strangely chooses to sing “I could have danced all night” famously over-dubbed in the film My Fair Lady, much to Hepburn’s disgust.
Burrows clearly has great admiration and affection for the women she is presenting and that brings real warmth to the show. The two musicians working with her are very good and join in the performance when required as well as providing the music.
In the 2nd act, Burrows brings her Marilyn Monroe in a truly terrible wig and moves away from simply interpreting the actress as she did with Garland and Hepburn and launches in to a full Marilyn act, mock flirting with some of the audience and moving offstage to interact with some of them, a move that I am sure is as uncomfortable for everyone involved as it is for those watching!
This is an interesting piece of theatre, and while far from perfect, was enjoyable viewing.
Reviewed by Kirsty Heath