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All American Songbook Surprise at The Loft

The cast of The World Goes 'Round. Photo courtesy of The Loft Theatre.

The World Goes 'Round at The Loft Theatre, Leamington, from Wednesday 29 November to Saturday 9 December 2023.

Review by Ann Cee

Do you just love ‘All That Jazz’, ‘New York, New York’ and ‘Maybe This Time’? Do the Stars and Stripes of America make your skin tingle with delight? And does having a slice of Strictly on your doorstep sound like a good night out? If your answer is yes, you’re going to love The World Goes ‘Round.

On the production's opeing night, Wednesday 29 November, The Loft’s super cast of five transported us through the loves and losses of a cornucopia of characters who share their stories of ecstasy, fun and sorrow. The songs of Kander and Ebb are fabulously written and beautifully delivered, giving us laugh out loud humour about everything from sneaky partners, ubiquitous cardboard coffee cups or that everyday favourite, Sara Lee cake.

Opening night at The Loft. Photo courtesy of The Loft.

Bright lights, lively colours, live music and well choreographed movement are the themes of this show and it was lovely to settle in for strong performances from Martha Allen-Smith, Kim Arnold, Chris Gilbey-Smith, Ben Munday and Val Whitlock. A strength of the show is the ability of each of the cast to deliver a stand-alone solo as well as to blend together in the fabulous five voice harmonies.

Some of the highlights for me were Gilbey Smith’s Mr Cellofane, Val Whitlock on roller skates and Kim Arnold dancing the night away and making an appointment for Arthur in the Afternoon. There was also masses of American smooth from Allen-Smith and Munday.

Martha Allen-Smith, Kim Arnold, Chris Gilbey-Smith, Ben Munday and Val Whitlock. Photo courtesy of The Loft.

‘The Grass is Always Greener’ ‘Maybe This Time’, ‘Everyone Loves a Winner’, ‘Money Makes the World Go Round’, ‘Life is a Cabaret’ confirm the pedigree of the second half as it builds to its finale. Frank Sinatra and Liza Minnelli would be proud.

Good performances from the orchestra, especially the piano and keyboards, kept this show whizzing along through a myriad of tones and tempos.

Overall, an entertaining night out.


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