Saturday 16 December 2017


I remember last year saying the panto at the Regent Theatre, Stoke was the best one yet..... I was wrong... I think this year's is definitely the best one I've seen.

It was funny, entertaining and the 3D element was just magical. Jonathan Wilkes (Aladdin) and Christian Patterson (Widow Twanky) co-directors and hilarious comedy duo had both children and adults laughing. So many innuendos that Luke ended up laughing at just because we were!

The dancers were energetic and acrobatic such a delight to watch. The scenery was glittery and colourful and the 3D genie was totally out of this world. Scherezade was played by the stunning and very lovable Amanda Coutts, those abs were to die for! Yazmin Wood played Princess Jasmine had a beautiful voice and had great chemistry with Aladdin. Abanazer (Kai's Owen) was this year's baddie, we particularly liked it when they went off script and got the giggles. Emperor Ming played by Simon Nehan was also hilarious.

There was no '12 days of Christmas' this year but still lots of slapstick humour.

We thoroughly enjoyed it and as always gets us in the mood for Christmas. Well done to all the cast and crew for this spectacular performance. And lovely to hear that Beryl Smith is still going strong!

If you haven't booked tickets already go to

Wednesday 29 November 2017


When I met my husband back in 1996 the spare room in my house was dedicated to Take That, a real shrine, I had posters on all 4 walls as well as the ceiling. (I can't believe I just admitted that or that he actually married me!)

I am a self obsessed fan and was very excited that their music was being featured in a Musical, written by Olivier Award winning Tim Firth. They are Britain's Most Successful boy band of all time and the show includes Never Forget, Back for Good, A Million Love songs, Relight my fire and Rule the world, plus lots more. The winners of BBC's Let it Shine, Five to Five play the Band. 

The Band is not about the story of Gary, Robbie, Mark, Jason and Howard and how they formed Take That, but about 5 16 year old girls in 1992 who's lives centre around the Band and their music. They are reunited 25 years later and try and fulfil their dream of meeting their heroes. There are many laughs and tears along the way.

It was a thrilling performance with lots of laughs, tears and a great story line, the finale had us out of our seats dancing and singing along to some classic Take That Hits. The scenery, set and staging were sensational along with lots of quick changes too. 

The cast who played the excitable teenagers were talented, great singers and their rendition of Relight my fire was incredible. The 'mature' cast had us in stitches and all very likeable in their own way.

The 5 boys did not disappoint either, they belted out our favourites sounding very true to the originals and also brilliant dancers too.

My only disappointment was none of Take That joined them on stage for the finale as in recent towns, especially as its Robbie's hometown. I think I would have actually passed out!

Anyone who has ever grown up with a boy band will relate to this fantastic Musical. Don't miss your chance to see it in our beautiful Regent Theatre, Stoke. 

Click on the link to get your tickets today at the Regent Theatre you will not be disappointed!

Thursday 12 October 2017


In my eyes Dirty Dancing is the Ultimate feel good movie, it has great songs, romance and lots of dancing. Last night I spent the evening at the beautiful Crewe Lyceum watching 'A Night of Dirty Dancing', the ultimate tribute show.

I didn't know what to expect but the show had its own storyline and also retold the original story. Baby and Johnny were sizzling on stage, one of the scenes was very sexy! The dancing was brilliant and I know how tricky it is to dance on that stage, the steep is horrendous! The leads were strong with their solo songs and had the audience hooked till the end.  There was lots of banter with the audience and especially when there was a technical fault with the lights. 2 of the cast did so well ad-libbing to keep us entertained. 

The show was comical and entertaining and it was a great way to spend a rainy Wednesday evening.
It was a must-see for any Dirty Dancing fan! Go to the fanpage on Facebook for more details:-

Thursday 5 October 2017


Luke has always loved the David Walliams books, we read Demon Dentist together but he generally reads the books with daddy. As I knew I was coming to see Awful Auntie I thought I'd better speed read it myself and finished it in 3 days. I went with two 10 year olds and his biggest fans, it was nice to hear them discussing how it would be portrayed on stage.

The story is set in Saxby Hall owned by Lord and Lady Saxby and their 12 year old daughter Stella. After a visit to London with her parents, Stella wakes up to find her 'Awful' Aunt Alberta is caring for her and that her life is in danger. With the help of a ghost and a very large owl Stella fights for her life and manages to outwit her Aunt.

The larger than life Awful Auntie was played by Timothy Speyer, he was a comical but also quite menacing at times. The scene where Stella and Soot played tricks on Aunt Alberta was slapstick and had us belly-laughing.

Georgina Leonidas played Stella Saxby, Luke was most excited that she had been in the Harry Potter movies and also voiced a part in the video game. The banter between the posh young lady and 'cockney' Soot (Ashley Cousins) was funny and they had great chemistry. The revolving scenery and the car chase was absolutely fantastic.

Aunt Alberta's sidekick was Wagner the Owl, he was a life-like puppet controlled by Roberta Bellekom. Gibbon the butler was Richard James, he is exactly how I had imagined him to be from the book. We giggled as soon as he walked onto the stage as we knew he was going to do something ludicrously funny.

Birmingham Stage Company did a fantastic job and Neal Foster captured all the elements of the book and there was only a few adaptations which we reviewed on the journey home. I can't remember the last time I saw something at the theatre without them breaking out into a song and dance. Maybe that is something Mr Walliams might consider doing next! Mr Stink the Musical perhaps?

Click on this link for tickets to the Regent Theatre, its on until the Saturday and its less than 2 hours with an interval so not a late night for the little ones.

Tuesday 26 September 2017


I grew up in the 80's and love anything to do with the 80's. As a dancer I absolutely fell in love with Flashdance - The Movie when I saw it for the first time.  

The story is of an 18-year old welder, Alex Owens, who's dream is to go to dance school, her evening stint dancing in Harry's Bar does not fulfil her so she is encouraged by her best friend, Gloria to audition. It features the songs "Flashdance... What a Feeling", "Maniac", "Manhunt", "Gloria" and "I Love Rock and Roll".

Joanne Clifton plays Alex, anyone who's a Strictly Come Dancing fan knows she won last year with Ore Oduba and also the Christmas Special with Harry Judd. She is a truly amazing dancer but I wasn't aware she had such a magnificent singing voice and superb acting skills too. I'm always apprehensive when I know the performers have to put on an American accent but  Joanne and the whole of the cast were flawless.
Ben Adams plays Nick Hurley, Alex's love interest and Boss's son. Adams was the lead singer of pop group A1 (who I saw on tour a few years ago!) The chemistry between the two was sizzling and they made a very convincing couple. 
The ensemble had many different roles including change of character, costume changes and also doubled up as stage hands. Scenery was switched around the stage creating clever backdrops. The dancing was phenomenal and entertaining.
It is a heartwarming story with a very strong dance routines and emotional songs. It had us up on our feet clapping along to the reprise.
Flashdance  is on until Saturday 30th September. Go to to buy your tickets now

Wednesday 12 July 2017


I was lucky to take Luke to see the truly Wonderful Wonderland  at the Regent Theatre in Stoke. The auditorium was packed and full of children so I knew Luke was going to enjoy it.

Wonderland is the modern day version of a mixture of Alice in Wonderland and Alice Through the Looking Glass. Fast forward to a now 40 year old woman, Alice's miserable life takes an interesting turn after she follows the White Rabbit through a broken lift into Wonderland, along with her daughter, Ellie from a failed marriage and her neighbour, Jack. She comes face to face with familiar characters who we know and love from the original books including the Queen of Heart, Mad Hatter and the Cheshire Cat.

The singing and acting was superb, Kerry Ellis plays Alice, her voice was strong and powerful, Naomi Morris plays the stroppy teenage daughter, Ellie, very true to life and funny. For me I was pleasantly surprised by Wendi Peters who played the Queen of Hearts, as a lifelong Corrie fan I wasn't expected too much but her voice was amazing and she portrayed the character well. The mad hatter was not the usual 'male' but played by Natalie McQueen who belted out some outstanding numbers.

The set and costumes were colourful, it had us totally engaged throughout the show. It was great to see Luke recognise the different characters too. A fun evening for the whole family.

Wonderland is on until 15th July in Stoke

Friday 23 June 2017


In the 80's my sister and I spent many a time pretending to be Pepsi and Shirley (the backing singers from Wham). We were totally besotted with George Michael, he was our first Pop Idol and we were totally besotted with him. We knew all the dance moves and song lyrics.

On 25th December 2016 the devastating news that George Michael had passed away at only aged 53 was shocking and the worst end to a crazy year where we lost many legends. 

Faith - George Michael The Legacy is currently touring and we were lucky enough for them to visit Crewe Lyceum Theatre. The 2 hour show is packed full of George's best loved hits including Outside, Freedom, Careless Whisper and Faith, and also including my favourite Wham! songs. Wayne Dilks performs exactly like George and has his dance moves and mannerisms to perfection, his voice was spellbounding. The backing singers Sofia Wilks and Annette Campbell were superb, as was the very talented Saxophonist and Flutist Jo Ashcroft. The whole production was professional and all the musicians were amazing. 

It was a celebration of George Michael's talent and was both emotional and uplifting. Dilks had us up out of our seats singing and clapping along and then we were just captivated with his heartfelt renditions of Jesus to a Child and Different Corner. 

The atmosphere in the Theatre was buzzing and I would highly recommend to any fans of George Michael. 

Monday 8 May 2017


Well I have had some eventful Saturday nights in my time, but last night was a first, I can honestly say I have never spent one watching men in lycra wrestling! Luke (now 10) has always been a fan of Wrestling on the TV and has a box full of figures so to see some high impact wrestling for real was going to be fun. We were intrigued how it would be set up, the ring took up virtually the whole stage which could be seen from all seats in the auditorium.

The atmosphere was electric, it was great to see so many youngsters dressed up in masks, head bands and foam fingers. There was so much excitement whilst waiting for the show to start.

We were encouraged by the MC to shout as loud as we could, stamp our feet and that is just what the audience did. There were lots of boos for the baddies and big loud cheers for the good guys. Our favourite was the local from Stoke, Deano, his match ended up in the aisle amongst the audience, we got to see the action very close up!

We were treated to 4 energetic matches, the camaraderie between the wrestlers and audience was entertaining and panto-like. The last bout was the Battle Royal, where all 8 wrestlers are in the ring at the same time, their aim is to throw their opponents out over the top rope, a little predictable but the good guys always win....don't they?

It was an amusing and enjoyable night with my little man and he revelled in it which was the main thing. For anyone who has young children who are obsessed in Wrestling, this show is an absolute must.

Thursday 30 March 2017


It's not often I don't know the story-line or many songs from a musical, so although I'd heard rave reviews about Funny Girl, it was nice to go along without any expectations and try to predict the storyline (which I got completely wrong!)

The movie version brought global fame to Barbra Streisand 50 years ago and boasts some of the most iconic songs in film and theatre history, including People and Don't Rain on My Parade. It tells the true story of Fanny Brice, whose vocal talents and comedic ability see her rise from Brooklyn music hall singer to Broadway star.

West End star, Natasha J Barnes played Fanny brilliantly, her voice was captivating and her
american accent was spot on, her comedy expressions and mannerisms had the audience laughing out loud. Recording artist Darius Campbell (of Pop Idol fame) played a charismatic, handsome and very charming Nick Arnstein. The chemistry between them was believable and romantic.

Set in the 1920's the costumes were colourful, scenery was incredible and I was impressed with the amount of quick changes including footwear. 

The ensemble entertained us with their tap and ballet numbers and Joshua Lay showed off his talents as the lovable Eddie Ryan. Rachel Izen played Mrs Brice (Fanny's mum) surprised me with her energetic dancing, she obviously wasn't as old as she looks!

Barnes was genuinely humbled and emotional with her standing ovation, which was well deserved. Funny Girl is on until Saturday.

Friday 24 February 2017


I introduced Luke to Michael Jackson about 2 years ago and he was instantly hooked, I grew up listening to his music and its hard to believe the Bad Album first came out 30 years ago, so when a friend told me that Forever Jackson was coming to Crewe Lyceum I knew I had to get tickets. An even bigger bonus was it was during half term so the late night didn't matter!

It was lovely to see so many other children dressed up as the man himself, don't think Luke would have forgiven me if he was the only one with the black fedora and sequin glove. You could feel the excitement in the theatre waiting for the show to start. It was an amazing atmosphere when Robin Parsons stepped on stage for the first time and opened with 'Wanna be starting something'. His look and his moves were identical to Michael Jackson and it gave me goosebumps as we have watched many videos and live show recordings to compare. My personal favourite is Smooth Criminal and when he performed the 'lean' we were highly impressed.

The costumes were also a carbon copy of the originals, there was lots of quick changes but we were entertained with dance breaks by the talented 4 Hip Hop Pop dancers. The musicians were equally outstanding and the guitarist for Dirty Diana was incredible.

After the interval we were treated to some oldies from the Jackson 5 and an acapella version of 'Why' which dispelled the rumours that Robin lip syncs, there was certainly no doubt about him singing live. We weren't disappointed by the Moonwalk during 'Billie Jean' and the whole dance break section under the spotlight.

At the end, Robin does a Free meet and greet for the fans, he said that he would not leave until the last person had had their picture taken. It was a real treat for Luke and such a nice thing to do for the fans as I'm sure after an energetic 2 hour show all he wanted to do was take off the make up and costume and get home!

Making memories with my son is what I love doing best and I think I succeeded, with the help of this stunning performance of the legend, Michael Jackson. We hope Robin returns to Crewe next year, we will certainly be back again!

Check out his website for updates of forthcoming shows