Review: Rave reception for worldwide hit musical Buddy

Glen Joseph as Buddy Holly.

Glen Joseph as Buddy Holly.

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Musical theatre fans need little prompting to rave on at the best party in town.

Chesterfield has waited a long time for global phenomenon Buddy - The Buddy Holly Story to arrive and what a welcome it has been given.

A packed audience on Monday gave a standing ovation to the best touring show to come to town in years.

“Chesterfield - you rock,” said Alex Fobbester, beaming with joy after his blistering performance as Buddy, a role in which he alternates with Glen Joseph.

This show is one of sheer class with brilliant performances of Buddy’s hits in a show that is tight as a drumskin and as slick as the wax on Ritchie Valens’ hair.

Unlike other musicals which have superstars’ songs scattered through a fictitious tale, this is the true story of a bespectacled boy who changed the face of rock ‘n’ roll.

It’s a timeless tale of an ambitious artiste fighting to keep his musical integrity, even if means falling foul of big record companies and childhood friends.

Buddy and his band The Crickets broke down cultural barriers as the first white band to perform at the Apollo Theatre in Harlem. There’s a fantastic scene in the musical depicting this in which Miguel Angell and Jordan Cunningham do a great duet of Shout, complete with them doing the splits.

Jordan returns as pelvis-thrusting Ritchie Valens singing La Bamba at the Winter Dance Party which includes Thomas Mitchells in fine voice for The Big Bopper’s hit Chantilly Lace.

Buddy is a a hand-clapping, foot-tapping, rollercoaster ride which is running at Chesterfield’s Pomegranate Theatre until Saturday. The only downbeat is that there is no room to dance to it.