Chariots of Fire on stage

October 25, 2012

As we take our seats the athletes are warming up on stage in their Lycra. As the house lights dim the familiar strains of Van Gellis kick in and they start running around the revolving stage and the track that is made round the front rows and back of the stage. Men in in long white shorts and tee shirts join them and the Lycra clad athletes peel off leaving us in the 1920s. Suddenly we are at at Cambridge train station and Harold Abrahams is arriving for his first term. There are some wonderful set pieces of singing, running and dining evoking life at Cauis college. We meet Eric Liddell in the puritanical Scottish highlands and see more wonderful running. There is a marvellous hurdling scene with the champagne resting on the ends as the actor flies over repeatedly. These  boys have to be bloody fit with all the running and jumping they do.

The production is great and clever and fun. But the pace dips in the middle third. Luckily we all know how it goes thanks to the film, so we give them a bit of leeway and the second half picks up being the actual Olympics. Having had such a fantastic experience this year at London 2012 just seeing the five rings lifted spirits and basked us all in a warm glow. And then the races were run and the big sweeping music kicked in and we cheered him home.

Great idea for Olympic year and impressive multiskilled cast- acting, singing, running, playing instruments, choreographed moves, but not as emotionally engaging as the film. Which I am going to get off amazon and watch again! Three stars.


2 Responses to “Chariots of Fire on stage”

  1. Theresa Says:

    very well said you can always be a critic if that Doctor thing goes tits up!!! I had a great evening xxx

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