Newest Review: ... other as two new pins Of one womb born, on the self same day How one was kept and one given away?" Blood Brothers is a very power... more
Member Name: Leannie1000
Advantages: Fantastic storyline, songs, acting
Disadvantages: Not suitable for younger kids
I studied Blood Brothers at school and went to see it years ago in the West End - and loved it. I have meaning to go and see it again for years and finally managed to see the touring production last night at the Liverpool Empire Theatre. I was a bit worried that it wouldn't live up to teenage memories or be as good as the West End version - I shouldn't have worried!
Blood Brothers is a Willy Russell musical set in early 1980s Liverpool. It tells the story of twins seperated at birth and the tragic consequences of this. Mrs Johnstone (Lyn Paul) is single mum to several rag-tag kids, pregnant again and thinking her little cleaning job will keep them afloat.
Finding out she is expecting twins, she makes a pact with her boss, the posh Mrs Lyons, who is unable to have children, to give one of the babies away, rather than risk losing all of them to care.
Mickey stays with mum and Edward goes to Mrs Lyons. Edward is posh, well-educated and rich as a result, while Mickey lives on a poor council estate.
Not knowing they are brothers, they meet - first as children and then as teenagers - and become best friends, eventually falling in love with the same girl, Linda.
The show follows thier lives and the consequences of the pact between Mrs Johnstone and Mrs Lyons, with the themes of superstition and class throughout.
The cast were absolutely fantastic throughout - Lynn Paul's voice was incredible and Sean Jones as Mickey was amazing - he really did make you believe he was seven and later transformed very well into the depressed, broken man. (I'm not giving too much away here, it starts with the ending and goes back in time). He is the true heart of the show and the one you are rooting for.
The sight of grown adults acting as children - with the resuting spitting, swearing and snot - is really funny and the supprting cast did a fine job too.
The production is slick and there were no hiccups, the sets aren't rzzle dazzle, but they aren't supposed to be - this musical is about the story first and foremost.
Although the play is a generation old and some of the references a little dated now (and not one of the kids is obese!) the themes still resonate - especially the scenes of the dole queues, considering we are once again in recession hit times.
The music and songs were sung beautifully and emotionally - especially the final 'Tell me it's not true'. It is a musical that definitely makes you laugh and cry. In a way, it's more of a play with songs. It is something that does stay with you after you watch it.
My friends had never seen it before and they also thought it was great - as did the whole audience, who gave a standing ovation.
I paid £35 (including booking fee) for pretty good seats in the stalls - well worth it. I loved it and am humming the songs today.
I would definitely recommend going to see this - even those who don't like musicals!
Go and see it!
Summary: A great show
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