Our House, CYGAMS – Civic Theatre, Chelmsford
This musical follows Camden schoolboy Joe Casey and explores family, love and the wrong side of the law in this coming-of-age Madness mash-up.
Chelmsford Young Generation hit this show full on with energetic performances from the start. It’s fair to say that this show revolves very heavily around the central character Joe Casey as both Good Joe and Bad joe. Charlie Toland excellently tackled this role and was very appealing in both guises. Not only does he rarely leave the stage but when he’s not on stage he’s changing costume which is a huge challenge for any performer regardless of age!
Alongside Charlie, there were splendid performances from Reuben Beard as Emmo and Matt Wickham as Lewis. These happy go lucky lads brought great humour and enjoyment to these parts and were perfect foils for each other. I really loved their characterisations.
Jessie Hadley as Sarah gave a delightful performance, she has a lovely singing voice and was a great partner for Charlie. As the bad influence in the show, Jack Toland was suitably nasty as Reecey. He had good stage presence and was incredibly enjoyable to watch.
Angie and Billie, Sarah’s sarcastic and bitchy girlfriends were played by Millie Parsons and Livi Khattar. Both looked like they were having a great time playing these roles and were great fun in their parts.
The two adults in the show Jimmy Hooper as Joe’s Dad and Jill Gordon as Joe’s Mother both gave quality performances. Jimmy in particular at times being a little reminiscent of Suggs himself.
I have to say the set was great and was superbly handled and manoeuvred by the stage crew. I hate long scene changes but these were swift and expertly done and I also have to congratulate all the cast who had some very quick costume changes.
The cast handled the music of Madness very well added by an excellent band and in particular a very seductive saxophone.
The show bounded along with verve and energy, If you haven’t managed to see this yet – you should definitely get tickets for the final 2 performances.