Siobhan Dillon and Mark Evans are now starring as Molly and Sam
A new West End hit has landed. 'Ghost the Musical' is a gleaming piece of stagecraft whose smoke, mirrors, full-throttle heartache and beguiling special effects put it light years ahead of many of its ageing competitors.
Musicals converted from movies tend to be weak, commercially opportunistic products compared to purpose-built shows. But Oscar-winning screenplay writer Bruce Joel Rubin ensures that his hankie-wringing thriller about love which comes back from the grave throbs on in its new incarnation.
There's no avoiding the fact that Dave Stewart and Glen Ballad's inserted musical numbers delay that story instead of advancing it. But the pumped up power ballads are a high-impact emotional workout for the marvellously full-throated leads – even if they do tend to bench press your feelings instead of caressing them.
Caissie Levy and Richard Fleeshman make the Demi Moore/Patrick Swayze roles of murdered banker Sam Wheat and his artist lover Molly their own. Andrew Langtree is wonderfully desperate and insidious as Sam's betraying buddy, Carl Bruner. And Sharon D Clarke is a mountain of much-needed comedy and charisma, belting her way to glory as the sham psychic who helps Sam avenge his death and touch his beloved Molly one last time.
The acting and singing has a quality which will impress you, even if this piece of 20-year-old New York gothic makes you want to giggle in all the wrong places. (The film's famous potter's wheel scene, where ghostly Sam caresses Molly as she gets dirty with a phallic lump of clay, could only be erotic in close-up and should probably have been cut entirely.)
But it's the show that dazzles. Illusionist Paul Kieve yanks spirits impressively out of dead bodies and sends them whooshing through walls. And the New York underworld is a gift to 'Enron' projectionist Jon Driscoll, the go-to guy if you want capitalism bubbling all over your set in the form of stock values and skylines. Kieve, Driscoll and designer Rob Howell create an electric shadow-filled world of greed and yearning, which choreographer Ashley Wallen peoples with corporate drones on conveyor belts.
The chorus of soft-shoe-shuffling New York dead look like odd vaudevillian hitchers in this slick, rapturous vehicle. But at least they bring a touch of ironic life to a show which emotes on the nexus of sex, death, grief and danger for most of its two hour 40 minute runtime.
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Average User Rating
4.7 / 5
- 5 star:6
- 4 star:0
- 3 star:1
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I saw Ghost yesterday and I absolutely loved it, it's one of my favourite musical, or maybe the favourite one from now on. The singing and the dancing were amazing. The psychic character exhilarating, I was crying and the next minute laughing out loud. The special effects were fantastic. For me it was just perfect.
I cannot understand the 5 star comments. This show is nothing but average. Yes it looks great with the visual effects but with the male lead lacking charisma and the female lead being so cold and harsh, the music being cheesy 90s europop/ballad trash, the choreography absolutely dire, an ensemble totally wasted, this show is nothing special. Go and see Matilda. Now that is a decent show!
I'm speechless...just go and see it. The best play I have ever seen in my life...by far and I've seen many. Great music and special effects that will leave you amazed
I saw Ghost on Saturday 1st October & it was phenominal, I cried as much as I did with the film version! The cast were amazing. I've been to a few shows now but this is by far the best I've seen. I even managed to get pictures & autographs afterwards, the cast were only too happy to oblige. I would go again in a heartbeat. Best birthday present EVER! xxx
An amazing musical in every way! It is so refreshing to see such a strong cast, great music and special effects, all wrapped up in one show! True to the film and with out a doubt will make the strongest person cry a tear! A well deserved standing ovation at the end and a lot of ladies waiting in line for the toilets to touch up there mascara! Please go and see this show, you will not regret it!