The Blues Brothers – Approved, Presented by Judith Belushi & Dan Akroyd, Belgrade Theatre, Coventry

Reviewed by Helen and Garry McWilliams

The Blues Brothers - Belgrade Theatre 3

“Bend Over Let Me See you Shake Your Tail Feather”… Yes, you! Don’t just sit there – this is a fast-moving ‘revue’ which we guarantee will have you dancing in the aisles, or at the very least jigging in your seat!

Starring Brad Henshaw as Jake and Chris Chandler as Elwood, this is a show that is faithful to the film and the ‘brothers’ are extremely well cast, the charismatic pair have soulful voices which lend themselves to the popular hits. Highlights from the duo are difficult to pinpoint as the entire show is excellent, however Chandler sings ‘Rubber Biscuit’ extraordinarily well (no mean feat) and Henshaw excels with ‘Shotgun Blues’. As a combined force they delighted the audience with ‘Rawhide’, ‘Living in America’ and ‘Everybody Needs Somebody To Love’ to name but a few.

The set was reminiscent of the film and the resident band were all great characters, as much a part of the ‘cast’ as the performers themselves. Also putting in a fierce appearance were the ‘Bluettes’ namely: Alexus Ruth, Jenessa Qua and Jenny Fitzpatrick. All of the girls were of the same high standard and belted out ‘Respect’ and ‘Think’ to the lively, receptive audience. The ‘Bluettes’ wore glittery outfits and lit up the stage with their synchronised dance moves and bubbly personalities. Also, not forgetting William Hazell who sang the famous number ‘Minnie The Moocher’ and encouraged us all to ‘hi de hi de hi de hi’ along with him. We were more than happy to oblige and felt that Hazell made a wonderful contribution throughout.

Not only was there audience participation with ‘Minnie the Moocher’ but also in ‘Flip, Flop and Fly’ – and with that came actions for us to learn… The entire cast looked like they were having a ball and that atmosphere filled the auditorium, the one complaint we have is that we could have gone on dancing and singing all night long and the show finished just before 10pm!

The tour is officially licensed and presented by Dan Akroyd (from the original film) and Judith Belushi (widow of John Belushi from the film), it is the only live ‘Blues Brothers’ stage show that carries this seal of approval. You can catch ‘The Blues Brothers’ at the Belgrade Theatre in Coventry until Saturday 4th May. For more tour dates and venues please visit www.thebluesbrothersapproved.com

 

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