On Saturday 10th June 2017, I took my mum to see Thoroughly Modern Millie at the Churchill Theatre in Bromley for her birthday. The show starred Joanne Clifton from Strictly Come Dancing as Millie and overall, we enjoyed it.
Honestly, if I was going to see a show this is not what I would have picked to see, but it really surprised me with how good it was an how much I enjoyed it. The plot revolves around a country girl named Millie, who moves to New York to become a ‘new woman’ and gets caught up in society life and a white slavery plot… As I knew nothing about the plot I was very surprised by this development but I think it worked well.
The 1920s aesthetic was delightfully prominent throughout the production and even integral to some of the jokes, while the costumes used throughout were not only stylish but visibly worked for all the Charleston and tap dancing in the musical. I walked out wanting a whole new wardrobe of 1920s dresses!
The whole company worked really well. I was very impressed by the ensemble and their dancing was incredible, although I found the songs to be forgettable and not catchy. Lucas Rush played a crossdressing actor pretending to be a Chinese lady named Mrs Meers and while he was very funny, I wasn’t quite sure how this would be perceived by the audience and made me somewhat uneasy. Graham McDuff as Trevor Graydon lit up the second half of the production in a drunk scene and this was the highlight of the show. It even had Joanne Clifton and Sam Barrett, who plays Jimmy, in hysterics, although I did feel this was somewhat unprofessional. Joanne Clifton did a good job as Millie, however, I felt she was slightly annoying and easily overshadowed by other people in the cast such as Lucas Rush.
Although there were a lot of good parts to this production, including the costuming and dancing, overall I felt that some of the characterisation missed the mark, even though the company did well. I would give this production 3 stars out of five.