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      02.01.2004 04:08
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      The setting of Boy George's Taboo musical could only ever be in London. Could you ever imagine us Mancs producing anything as interesting as Leigh Bowery, Steve Strange or Boy George himself? Ok, maybe some of those people weren't born in London but it provided a migration point where madness and bohemia could gel together and produce the sort of fantasy club scene which only Michael Alig could match over in New York. After a successful run in London, Taboo arrives in Manchester at the Lowry Theatre for a month long run which will hopefully rub off on us Mancs to produce something more interesting than Liam Gallagher. Mixing the popular Culture Club hits such as "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me" and "Church Of The Poison Mind" alongside 20 new songs including "Everything Taboo" and "Stranger In This World" the musical focuses on Boy George through the eyes of a young man escaping from the suburbs called Billy who ventures into the club scene. Played by Declan Bennett, formally of the pop band Point Break and now launching his own career under the name Sum Lad From Cov, he heads a stella cast which include the near perfect Stephen Ashfield (Boy George), hilarious Drew Jaymson (Phillip Salon), Steven Osbourne (Petal) and James Gillan (Marilyn). It's the appearance of Mark Little (Neighbours Joe Mangel / C4's Rise) which has taken some people back for his role of Leigh Bowery, but the Aussie copes with it formidably and hands the baton over to Julian Clary for the dates in January. Taboo brings everything a musical should - laughter and tears in equal measure - and the CD soundtrack on First Night Records is well worth purchasing after the show as the songs truly do stand out in their own right. For more info: www.thelowry.com / www.tabootheshow.co.uk

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