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We Will Rock You
Until Sat May 31
Time Out rating:
Time Out says
Posted: Thu Apr 14 2011
Problems with Ben Elton's conversion of Queen's back catalogue into a theatrical production? 'We Will Rock You's depiction of a dystopian future where live music is banned rails against the corporatisation of music like a crusty hippy in John Lewis. Yet during the interval, the tannoys blare out: 'Ladies and gentleman, the “We Will Rock You” finale is guaranteed to blow your mind! So get your glowsticks now!'.
Agit-prop tirades against the soullessness of the state's enforced formation dancing are used to paint the rock-star wannabe of a lead (called Galileo Figaro, obviously) as a futuristic Che Guevara. But upon the discovery that rock'n'roll offers untrammelled freedom of expression, he prances about like one of Britney's backing dancers.
At points, 'We Will Rock You' gets so worked up about the cultural impact of 'X Factor' et al that you wonder if the audience might be sent out to bring back Simon Cowell's head on a plate. Yet the production happily employs 'X Factor' ejectee Brenda Edwards as one of the leads. And while it's box-tickingly keen to include a (clunky) feminist female lead, they patronisingly explain her existential malaise as being a lack of 'Somebody to LURRRVE'.
But why would 'We Will Rock You' be a credible work of theatre? After all, Queen's brand image was so arch that they could've starred in their own 'Carry On' film. So never mind the clunky song intros ('What do I want? I want TO BRAAYYYYK FREEEEE!') and sexual innuendo ('You are an eager beaver.' 'You leave my eager beaver out of this!', etc). It SHOULD be daft. And ultimately, the main draw is a punchy soundsystem ringing to the katana-sharp live renditions of the band's material, although it's a bit of a shame that Freddie's lyrics are occasionally tinkered with for plot purposes. As is the underwhelmingly reserved atmosphere created by a tourist-heavy audience. Queen fans with a sense of humour won't be disappointed. Theatre fans may want to look elsewhere.
Average User Rating
3.9 / 5
- 5 star:23
- 4 star:8
- 3 star:3
- 2 star:4
- 1 star:5
My Wife and I truly loved this, even if you are not a Queen fan you will still enjoy. The music/singing was great and also very funny too. Going to take the kids next time.
This is an amazing feel good musical which makes you want more every time you see it!! I wen to see it for the 3rd time the other week and I still want to see it again. The cheesy story line makes you laugh at every "one liner". There are some sexual innuendo's, but what do you expect, it's QUEEN! The band is awesome and they really do the songs good justice. The surround system was replaced by the speakers from the London 2012 Olympics which give you the punch Queen music should have. I really suggest you go see this, the cast is brilliant and there is no fault to it at all. It's not a musical, its a rock theatre phenomenon! You really need if you're in need of a good time! The Dominion Theatre is the right venue for this show, being one of the biggest in the west end, you are sure to be in for a good time!
Outstanding yet again! This is the second time we have seen this musical and it never disappoints. A great story and a must for any Queen fans young or old! Excellent!!!!!
A must see musical. For Queen fans it's great way to enjoy their songs, with a story set in the future. For music fans it's a great night out. Pair it up with lunch before a matinee or dinner before the show and you have a brilliant day/ evening in the capital. Without giving away the story a good laugh for all.
For the last 6 years I have taken my daughters to see a west end musical every year, and we all agree this was by far the best we have seen. The singing and orchestra is out-standing and do Queen proud, and the superb surround sound ensures that their songs are heard superbly. Cant praise this show enough and would happily see it again and again.
As a visitor from Hull who goes to london particularly to see musicals i have always put this show down as a juke box musical and it was never high up on my list to see HOW!! wrong could i be this is a amazing show high energy with a fabulous cast that rock out to the end ,my husband (50) my daughter (17) and mum(77) all enjoyed this show so it appeals to almost everyone even moody teens and i would say itsa show for those who dont like deep heavy musicals you could say a show for those who dont like shows lol. The theater is directly at the entrance to tottenham court road tube station and there is a nice cafe rouge next door ,grab a ticket and there seems to be plenty of offer on this show as well
Fantastic voices bring Queen's unforgettable music to life with zest, energy and a great deal of humor in this highly entertaining rock musical. A somewhat tentative start paves the way for a powerful build-up as the story unfolds, telling us of long lost legends of rock whose creativity, individuality and rebellious spirit have been buried under the repetitive dust of mass-produced gaga-music which is being force fed to the masses by one giant, all-encompassing corporation. Only one man remains to tell the story of past generations and with the help of two young free thinkers, they set out to find the holy grail of rock.
Fantastic show! Saw it a few years ago and enjoyed it just as much second time around. Amazing cast, great music. Really uplifting. Brenda Edwards was amazing.
Tired, dull and lifeless with no real story line. Don't waste your money, go and see the Book of Mormon instead.
Fantastic show! I revived my Unforgettable Experience of Queen's Performance in the 80's when they have visited my Country, Brazil. My 16-year old twin sons were quite impressed with the excellent band performance!!! I strongly recommend the play. Paulo Machado
Went to the Saturday 14th December matinee and loved it. Very uplifting. Took my daughter to see it as her annual birthday treat. We had no expectations as it was very different from the usual musical we select but loved it. Came out singing and ready to hit the shops. Great cast and Galileo's voice was tremendous. A very fitting tribute to the music of Queen.
An Awesome Play with a Message Written and directed by Ben Elton and featuring the songs of Queen, We Will Rock You is a one of a kind musical show that narrates a story. As a fan of Queen and of the play, I am eagerly waiting for the 12th show of it in the Dominion Theatres. Galileo’s consistent struggle, the secret behind the lost axe and the overall suspense keeps me spell bound nearly every time I watch the play.
Good show - very lively. Went to the matinee show on a Saturday. Went with a group of friends, male and female. Would recommend. Got the £30 tickets, however not sure if I could justify spending much more than this to see this show.
Fantastic show. Was a perfect show for both my 18 year old son and 21 year old daughter and it was a great start to our London weekend. The voices of the cast were amazing and it was all over before we knew it. Would definitely go again.
Fabulous show. the second time I have seen this show well worth the money. I would definitely see this again
It is a fantastic show. It was my birthday present for my 60 years old friend, who used to work in the theatre. What I can say : two different generations were overwhelmed by the singing and the performance of actors. ‘We will rock you’ makes you feel so inspired and energetic like no other show!
Cracked it. Found a show that appealed to my son and all of his teenage friends. Paid a bit extra, got the good seats up font - even bought the cheesy glowsticks. Don't know if this counts as theatre in the cultural sense, by wow it delivered for us today.
Wonderful show! Great singing and dancing. Amazing music. Fabulous scenery. We totally enjoyed every single minute and would have no hesitation in recommending it. Can't fault this wonderful musical at all. We will be back !!!! :) :)
Absolutely superb performance. Our son and daughter joined us and they, too, found the performance witty and well-staged. This is the second time we have seen this production, with some years in between, and we were delighted to note that the script and visual imagery had been brought up to date, to make it relevant to a modern audience. If you like Queen's music then seeing this show is a must.
I had been before and booked a last minute ticket to bring a date to impress. We loved the show, the band were excellent. Bit of a bonus as the cast were in the foyer after the show so got close up to Killer Queen who was delightful if a bit scarey!!
singing was ok but was disappointed with the lack of staging. I am used to a les mis level of company and staging so it was very different. It felt like it was missing something to me...
A wonderful night for me & 2 teenagers. Just what we were expecting - rock-on music by queen with a skilful and lightly humorous script by Ben Elton. Every cast member gave their all and all excellent voices to match the tunes/character. Was v v pleased with the Time Out ticket service (ordered late but still received by post before leaving the far away shires for the big smoke)!!
The plot is basically a pantomime and I was a bit disappointed that some of the singing wasn't as strong as it should have been (they need to use proper rock singers) but the music and lyrics are fantastic. Get drunk and sing along!
Cheaply made, boring story, waste of Money and Time! Very disapointing and Way too expensive! Jersey Boys was a Million Times better!
The wife & i really enjoyed this show. . i quite liked the future high tech idea of the story . Yes it was a bit cheesey but i loved the use of the Queen hits. The 2 leads didnt feel as strong as Meat & Brit at times but still performed well. i was not surprised by the humour as it was written by Ben Elton. Also call out for the band who were excellent .
Don t go if you want to watch & listen to a tribute to Queen as this isn't it.. I read the reviews before booking for me(30) and my mother(57). To my disappointment i thought the set, costumes and gags are dated. You notice this show has been running for sometime now. The performances weren't great, am sure this musical has had better days.
enjoyed it very much - mostly surprised me that it was for my kids great also. love the songs - Queen forever!!!
Sadly, this was just a cheesy pantomime with Queen songs in it, and they even had the nerve to change the words to some of them! Brian May, how could you? I love Queen, and was really looking forward to this, but was very disappointed. It was an experience, and one that I will never forget, but not because it was any good. What amazed me was that there were several people who were actually taking it seriously!
I love Queen - but was sadly disappointed by this, until I realised it was meant to be a really cheesy Panto with Queen songs (some of which had their lyrics changed - scandalous) and had to suppress my boo's and hisses at the baddies, as some in the audience seemed to be taking it really seriously. As a night out it was an experience, but not if you really like Queen or were expecting something remotely sensible or something that really admired their back catalogue. Some of the singing was mediocre - the 2 leads on the night we went were completely outsung and outdanced by "Meat" and "Brit" - Oh, and the Pimms was really expensive too. Mind you, I did like Killer Queen's leather coat.
This musical is unbelievably bad, almost laughably so. The music is great, but the staging is distracting: the obtrusive video takes attention away from the dancing, which is probably okay because the choreography is so unexciting. And the plot? Forget it - it's like it was written by a 3rd grader. With a leading lady named "Scaramoosh" ( ! ), i almost burst out laughing when the leading man says, "I love you, Scaramoosh." Come on. What I don't get is why this has been running so long, and the audience seemed to like it. Oh, well.
As someone who likes Queen and likes musicals I have to say this was AWFUL. They were so busy trying to shoehorn in knowing pop culture references, innuendo and 'jokes' they forgot to make anything or anyone in it likeable. This crass, shouty production just serves to highlight that the effortless showmanship of Freddie Mercury was a rare, rare thing indeed.
brilliant show, a must for queen fans. Great performance by Galileo, loved the jokes by 'Curly'. A really lovely theatre.