The staging of the show was simple and contrasted with the dynamic use of lighting. This along with the fact that no microphones were used during the show for any of the singers gave the production an intimate feel, enhanced by the closeness of the audience to the stage area in the Brentwood Theatre.
While I was not blown away by the production as a whole, there were most definitely moments that were perfectly staged and songs that were sung with a sense of poise and beauty befitting them. There were also moments of brevity and the occasional belly laugh that broke up the tension at key moments.
Stewart Briggs as Jesus presented calmy and quietly, perhaps a little too quietly at the start. The power he has vocally only came out fully towards the end of the show in his rendition of 'Alas for You'. A rendition I have to say that did give me goosebumps.
Ben Martins as John the Baptist & Judas gave his allk throughout the whole show. He acted and reacted expertly and was enchanting to watch.
Emily Funnell had the job of singing what is perhaps my favourite song of the show, 'Day by Day'. She sang with poise and precision and gave a beautiful rendition.
Other singers of note included Nina Jarram and Sian Hopwood who both gave their all in their songs - a comedy highlight for me was Sian's motorbike riding with sound effects!
Towards the end of the show, there were two surprises for me. The first was Jack Lloyd's rendition of 'A Beautiful City'. Up to this point, Jakc jad not had any solo singing parts and so when I heard the voice begin the song, I was surpised to see it was coming form him. He was a little tentative at forst, but he grew vocally as the song developed. I would say his voice was perfect for the song.
The second surprise was that the Musical Director and pianist, Ian Southgate, sang with some of the company for the song 'On The Willows' as normally the MD of a show is hidden whilst doing the difficult job that they do. Ian's voice blended well with those of Jamie Fudge and Sarah Mayes to create a beautiful number.
This leads me on nicely to the person on stage, the unlisted fourth member of the band, who I feel was the strongest all round performer, Allister Smith. Not only was his voice the strongest of the company, standing out during songs and in fact supporting others at times, but he also had the task of playing a variety of percussion instruments throughout the show. Some times even whilst involved in company dance numbers!