Guys and Dolls has always been a favourite musical of mine and I always enjoy seeing it performed whenever I see it. With the BasOp production I was mightily impressed with the acting, singing, costumes, choreography, orchestration ... in short, I was mightily impressed with everything!
Ian Benson's Nathan Detroit was a masterclass of acting. He didn't simply deliver his lines, he reacted to those around him, adlibbed interjections and stayed in character the whole time. Playing alongside him was Angela Phillips as Miss Adelaide. Her high pitched, for want of a better word, squeaks were well used and well placed within both dialogue and songs. It was an excellent portrayal of the character. The other couple of the show Sky Masterson, played by Mathew Purton, and Sister Sarah Brown, played by Samantha Coles were equally impressive. Samantha's drunken If I Were A Bell being a particular highlight for me. Completing the main characters were Sean Hynes as Nicely Nicely Johnson and Josh Handley as Benny Southstreet, who were as outstanding in their roles as is possible. The comedy between the two was brilliant, again both scripted and in the background. Josh's almost Jim Carey (in his early days) facial expressions had me in stitches as did Sean's ever growing snacks - what a pretzel that man has!
A special mention must be made to Chris Foale who played Big Jule with relish, Steve Wilding as Harry the Horse and Fred Woodrow as Arvide Abernathy all of whom gave brilliant performances.
Looking back at the programme, there are so many more of the cast that gave superb performances, it amazes me how (a) I had not heard of this group before and (b) how they managed all to fit on the stage without it looking over crowded.
Ensemble scenes I particularly enjoyed included the Havana scene - there must've been a few headaches after all that tray hitting action! - Take Back Your Mink, Luck Be A Lady and the exceptionally well sung/performed Sit Down You're Rocking the Boat.
BasOp's next production is to be Fiddler on the Roof in May 2017 with Thoroughly Modern Millie planned for 2018!