Having only ever watched amateur dramatic performances of The King and I, I was unsure what to expect from the professional production and I was pleasantly surprised.
Firstly, I was surprised by the scale of the show. There’s a large cast, impressive staging and scenery and multiple costume changes. Whilst on the subject of scale, the creative team and production team were also vast and deserve high credit for the work they put into the show.
“There were a multitude of stunning dresses and the attention to detail was staggering”
Secondly, the quality of the dancing was divine. The ensemble dancing was incredibly slick and well synchronised. During the longer dance sequences, the audience was captured in the moment and the feeling of admiration was felt throughout the theatre.
Whilst talking about quality, I must mention the quality of the vocals. Yes you expect singing of a high standard in a professional production but this standard was maintained across the leading cast members as well as the ensemble. I must mention in particular, the soprano singers who delivered vocals of pure class.
Of course we’re not allowed to take pictures during the performance but I was blown away by some of the costumes. There were a multitude of stunning dresses and the attention to detail was staggering. I particularly enjoyed how the costumes complimented each other within certain groups of the cast such as the King’s wives and the royal children.
One of my favourite aspects of the performance was the younger members of the cast who were just charming. Whilst only having a small amount of lines and stage positioning to remember, they all did so well and were so professional throughout their performance.
“You could feel that the whole theatre was smiling”
I can’t finish this review without mentioning the orchestra. From the moment the introductory music began, I knew we were in for a treat. Too often the orchestra does not get a mention but they play a huge part in a theatre production. Sadly a lot of productions are now using more and more soundtracks but this does not have the same impact as live music. To watch a production with a full orchestra, provided a full authentic theatre experience.
The King and I was a fantastic production that enabled the audience to explore a range of feelings and emotions through the wonderful storytelling. There were moments of endearing humour that left you smiling and you could feel that the whole theatre was smiling then there were moments of sadness as members of the audience dug out their tissues. As the exit music played, there was a buzz throughout the theatre as the audience members started to leave talking about what a wonderful production we had just had the pleasure of watching.