Wicked has been playing in London for the last nine years and recently celebrated its seven millionth audience member. Having just completed a tour of the UK and Ireland, the show is still going strong and has just celebrated its latest cast change.
If you’re one of the few who hasn’t seen this spellbinding stage show, it is the back story to the classic Wizard of Oz. We find out who the Witches really were growing up and how they came to be the people we see in the film. We find out who the cowardly lion, tin man and scarecrow really were and find out there is more to the story than we originally thought. Throw in a love triangle, some great songs and some of the most colourful costumes you will see on stage and that pretty much sums it up.
Emma Hatton and Savannah Stevenson have continued in the lead roles of Elphaba and Glinda. Katie Rowley Jones who originated the role of Nessa Rose in the 2006 production and returned to play the role last year, have also continued in the role for another year. I think the role of Nessa Rose, whilst fairly small in comparison, is the best character in the show and Katie performs it brilliantly. Oliver Saville has taken on the role of love interest/love rat Fiyero and is the best I have seen in the role for quite a few years now. Daniel Hope takes on the role of munchkin Boq and puts his own little Newcastle spin on the character.
I’ve seen Wicked somewhere between 30-40 times over the years and it never seems to get old. There are so many intricate details in the show that you discover new elements you haven’t noticed before every time you go back. That is the magic of Wicked and why it has had such success over the years. Because audiences keep going back for one more trip down the yellow brick road.
Reviewed by West End Wilma
Photo: Matt Crockett