Kiss Me Quickstep

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What does it take to fulfil your dreams? Is passion and talent enough?

This play covers two days at Blackpool’s Winter Gardens for a major dance competition. We spend the majority of the time away from dancefloor: in the wings, in the dressing room and in the spaces where the competitors are getting changed or practicing. But this, of course, is where the real story happens…..

We watch three couples compete for the title, yet we watch them at a turning point in their lives.

Couple 1: Nancy (Abigail Middleton) & Luka (Adrian Klein). Pushed by her father, an absent mother and a new partner from overseas, Nancy was a junior champion and is still not quite reaching her potential with yet another dance partner her father is paying for and disapproving of. This time however, Luka has big dreams.

Couple 2: Jodie (Vicki Lee Taylor) & Justin (David Birch). The bickering married couple who have put dance before a normal life and therefore are running out of both time and money to make their dreams come true.

Couple 3: Sam (Michelle Bishop) & Lee (Joshua Lay) The hot favourite who win everything and who synchronise their lives as they have lived and breathed dance to achieve this top status. But are the strains starting to show?

We watch these characters lives unfold between the pressured rounds of the competition. The acting and dancing completely drew you in and the characters and their storylines engaged you from start to end. There was emotion, passion, energy, laughter and tears as we watched their lives transition into the next phase of life.

Although the story is around dance, it is packed with a range of human realities which everyone in the audience can relate to. The sequins and dancing was a true delight on the eyes yet the balance was perfect – this isn’t a dancing show with a thin story line trying to keep it together, this is a play about the stories of our characters and how they got to this point, a human story sprinkled with sparkles. 

However, don’t despair, we are indeed treated to the spectacular of dancing styles which was wonderful to watch.

The set is creative and incredibly effective, except there is no set. We have the dancefloor and an arch of lights. The props? We have a couple of chairs and four golden clothing rails. However, we have sequins, we have lights, we have music, we have sound…..this is all that is needed to make this production come alive.

The creative use of the clothing rails is so simple yet incredibly effective, it made the scene changes so fluid you barely noticed. The whole flow of the play was about movement and it was executed sublimely. 

This production fills the extra required dancers from the local community, a great way to engage the town. 

It was a delightfully enjoyable play with real characters who engaged you all the way. Definitely one to go and watch. The Wolsey Theatre looked a little different than usual, more space no standard stage and their new ‘on stage’ seating worked a treat.

This review first appeared on GrapevineLIVE

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