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Sunday 4 December 2016

All good clean fun as show in step with movie

MIA COLLINS

Published 29/01/2012 | 05:00

MUSICALS

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A QUARTER of a century on since the smash hit film Dirty Dancing broke box-office records, the stage adaptation of the well-loved movie has been brought from its London West End home to Dublin's Grand Canal Theatre for a six-week run.

It's an all-singing, all-dancing show set in 1963 -- the year of the Beatles, the year Kennedy was shot and Martin Luther King led the civil rights march on Washington.

Fans of the movie will be glad to see the stage production doesn't stray far from the original script.

Set in a summer camp in the Catskills mountains, this coming-of-age musical tells the story of Baby and Johnny, an unlikely pair, and how they overcome the social boundaries that are preventing their relationship from ever growing past a summer fling.

This musical features wonderful versions of the original movie soundtrack, so you can be sure you are going to hear the classics like 'I've Had The Time of My Life', 'Hungry Eyes' and 'Be My Baby'.

Paul-Michael Jones (Johnny), Emily Holt (Baby) and Charlotte Gooch (Penny) all shine in the three leading roles. The chemistry between them is evident from the moment they walk onstage. There is no denying the passion when they're dancing.

The ensemble does not fail to impress either.

The audience seemed particularly drawn to the stunning voice of Helen Kurup, who does some amazing renditions of the show's hits.

A large and colourful cast brighten the stage and the script by Eleanor Bergstin ensures that Dirty Dancing: The Musical rushes headlong from one hit to the next.

This is definitely one of the best crowd pleasers to come to the theatre and carries echoes of the stunning performances of Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey.

The opening night's audience reaction to Dirty Dancing: The Musical was deafening. The crowd laughed, clapped and cheered together throughout the whole production.

If that's anything to go by this show is going to buck the economic trend and enjoy a very successful six-week stint.

Sunday Independent

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