Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 31 January 2015

Murder, treachery and all that jazz as Chicago blows them away

Chicago, Grand Opera House, Belfast

The cast of Chicago: The Musical strut their stuff
The cast of Chicago: The Musical strut their stuff

With themes of greed, corruption, murder and treachery at its heart, Chicago was an exciting way to escape reality for a few hours on a cold Monday evening in Belfast.

The multi award-winning ’70s stage musical created by John Kander, Fred Ebb and god-like director and choreography legend Bob Fossey features a fantastic score, including numbers such as Razzle Dazzle, All That Jazz, and the merry murderesses’ anthem, Cell Block Tango.

The dance routines throughout were as solid as the fabulous dancers’ abs and the 10-piece band sounded fantastic.

Ali Bastian sparkled as ditzy but dangerous publicity-seeking nightclub singer Roxie Hart and Stefan Booth was in great form in his role as Billy Flynn, the slick lawyer with dollar signs in his eyes.

Bernie Nolan gave a good, if a little understated, performance as Mama Morton.

She got the biggest cheer of the night.

But it was Tupele Dorgu, as manipulative murderess Velma Kelly, who stole the show with her self-assured, confident and stylish performance.

Every movement was made with total commitment and her singing voice and acting are both very strong.

The sexy, sassy, dark and thrilling production, set in the roaring ’20s, is based on real- life events and was very well received by the Belfast audience.

There was a standing ovation at the end of Monday night's show.

Chicago runs until Saturday and there is some limited seating still available.

As the flyer says, it would be a crime to miss it.

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