This one is tricky. Club Tropicana The Musical is possibly the best / worst musical I’ve ever seen!
It’s brilliantly mindless and uplifting ‘fun’ – but equally low rent camp old nonsense.
There’s been literally no expense spent on the set, band, costumes or lighting but equally the 80’s soundtrack is infinitely feel-good and the cast work their arses off to sell this pointless, yet familiar, story.
Joe McElderry is an exhaustingly pathologically cheerful and professional star throughout selling his ludicrous part with gusto. ‘Lets laugh at the gays’ – and we do! He makes John Inman look positvely butch!
Kate Robbins arguably steals and drives the show magnificently as the comic lead. Joe, Kate and the pure energy of this insanely young and delicious cast are worth a visit for sure.
You’re left asking how does an 80’s production called ‘Club Tropicana’ have a fully booked UK Tour without this killer song being featured anywhere in the show? I mean HOWWWWW ????!!!!
Here’s our HD review via YouTube:
How can you compare this show to Les Mis, Wicked or even Motown, Priscilla or even the sensation FAME – all of which are on tour? Well, this show is a bit cheaper than them, £38 in the stalls, but it is simply incomparable.
It seems to me this cash cow is a rip-off of Benidorm Live – a bawdy low rent people pleaser.
It has a spanish hotel, an outrageous receptionist, endless overtly camp characters, karaoke on a stage and a script with more nob gags than you can shake a cocked shaped stick at.
I understand tonight’s performance at the Sheffield Lyceum had several covers, some of the singing was buttock clenchingly ‘off’. No-one seemed to notice or care, the audience were too busy singing along and heckling the ‘baddies’ – no need for fake corpsing in this production!
Having said all of that, there were stand out stars other than Joe and Kate…
Emily Tierny, Tara Verloop, Amelle Berrabah and especially Karina Hind have effortless voices knocking out the tricky 80’s playlist with ease. Karina is a star for sure!
The gorgeous Rebecca Mendoza is an old fav of mine from the Hairspray days and once again shamelessly owns her part throwing herself around the stage to the delight of the audience. The audience just love her.
All of the lads in the cast are a nice bit of trouser and to the delight of the (naturally female led 40 something) crowd they gave them what they wanted – six packs and budgie smugglers. They’re clearly all booked to be ridiculously ‘cute’ and born to play Skye in Mamma Mia. I’m only jealous.
The finale of this show is exhilarating. Nick Winston’s choreography is brilliant! If you’ve got a mostly average show, stick in a beautifully produced mega-mix, force the audience on to their feet and you can’t lose.
What can I say? I stayed until the end – mostly for the wrong reasons but I did laugh out loud throughout. You’ve got to see this show – it’s quite something!
Give them what they want! This theatre was full. God bless Club Tropicana.
Review by Alex Belfield for Celebrity Radio 10th March 2019.