•Complimentary Press Tickets•
Growing up, my favourite film of all time was Dirty Dancing. At one point, I lived and breathed it. Seriously, I kid you not, I paid my younger brother to learn the dance moves with me so that I could try and be ‘Baby’. Yes, I know, major cringe! For me, Dirty Dancing epitomises everything about coming of age, experiencing your first kiss, your first feelings of love. It is the perfect chick flick and I couldn’t have answered the email quicker when I was invited along to the press night for Dirty Dancing at the Bournemouth Pavilion, part of BH Live.
We were provided with a themed Gin cocktail and cupcakes with our VIP passes, and it really got the night off to a lovely start, chilling out in the Terrace Bar area and catching up with some of the other Bournemouth Bloggers who had come along for the show. I had brought my mum along, as I loved watching Dirty Dancing with her when I was younger, and it was such a nice opportunity to spend some time together.
The show started and I soon realised they had stuck almost word for word to the script from the film, which I personally loved. It was so nice to know the storyline but experience it differently to the film. I felt that the show helped bring it to life. Casting wise, I was happy apart from a couple of the older characters being portrayed as a lot younger in the show, most notably Dr Houseman and the woman that Johnny has been sleeping with and her husband, who were both a little too young and attractive compared to in the film.
I thought the set was brilliant, it really helped bring to life Kellerman’s, and the changes between scenes were done really smoothly (apart from a couple of times when the stage hand was spotted). I did notice that there was a slightly obstructed view from sitting to the far left of the stage. On occasion, when the actors were up on the stairs on stage, we couldn’t see them, which was a little frustrating, but overall we didn’t have any big issues with our view.
The dancing was incredible. I felt the exact same as I did all those years ago, watching the film for the first time and wishing I could dance like Johnny and his friends. My favourite dance scenes were Hungry Eyes and the Sheldrake and end dances with Baby and Johnny. I thought these were really cleverly done, and had the same passion and power as in the film itself.
You can’t get away from the fact that this is a very cheesy show. It isn’t high-brow, and you wouldn’t want it to be. The film is a classic chick flick, and the show is perfect to go along to with a group of friends, to enjoy the music and the dancing and wolf whistle along to the raunchier dance moves and (implied) sex scenes. I did find myself turning to Laura, from Max and Mummy, a couple of times during the second half, and raising my eyebrows as it did get a little over the top, but really it just made the experience all that much better. I don’t think the smile left my face throughout the whole show. It was certainly a feel good performance.
I will admit, I wasn’t a huge fan of the added scenes. I think I am such a huge fan of the film, that I didn’t feel it was necessary to add in interactions that, at times, came across as a little forced. I do think it made it feel the show was being padded out a bit, and I would have personally preferred a slightly shorter running time, than the unnecessary scenes that were slotted in.
However, by the end scene, the crowd was clapping along to the strains of Time of My Life, and one woman a couple of rows in front of us was enjoying herself so much, she got up and started dancing along. I had a fantastic time and really enjoyed the performance – I would definitely recommend going along to see the show whilst it is in Bournemouth. Tickets are available from the BH Live website, priced from just £34.75, and with performances on until 13th July.
I was gifted two tickets to the Press Launch of the show for the purpose of this review, however all words and images, unless stated otherwise, are my own.