Now, it must take every ounce of an actor’s professionalism to stay in character and sing a song on stage according to the musical director’s instructions, when the entire audience of a theatre is singing the SAME song (faster and much more raucously) at the SAME time.
But that’s exactly what most of the cast of the Millennium Forum’s ‘Tonight’s the Night’ had to manage during this rip-roaring show because Northern Ireland audiences like a tribute show, Northern Ireland audiences like to sing but Derry audiences LOVE to sing and just want to be up there on the stage!
‘Tonight’s The Night’ is a smash hit West End musical comedy inspired by the songs of Rod Stewart.
Written by multi award-winning writer and comedian Ben Elton (We Will Rock You), Tonight’s The Night features spectacular staging, a world class band, dazzling choreography and includes over 20 classic Rod Stewart hits like Tonight’s the Night, Hot Legs, Baby Jane, Do Ya Think I’m Sexy, Maggie May, This Old Heart of Mine, I Don’t Wanna Talk About It, Ooh La La, Some Guys Have All the Luck, Forever Young, Sailing and many more!
Set on the mean streets of Detroit the show tells the story of Stu, a shy young man who wishes to be like his hero the legendary rock n’ roll vagabond Rod Stewart! One night Stu strikes a deal with the Devil, trading his soul for Rod’s. He finds out the hard way that you can’t find true love using another man’s moves and that devil or no devil, there’s only one Rod Stewart!
Ben Heathcote as Stu had a superb voice, capturing the rasping quality of the real Rod Stewart but never lapsing into a karaoke impression of the Scottish singer.
A little powerhouse of energy, he impressed from the off, right through to the fantastic finale of the show ‘Sailing’ - complete with audience bedecked in sailor hats, arms swaying.
Andy Rees as Rocky, Stu’s mechanic mate, did a sterling job with ‘The First Cut is the Deepest’, fighting to hold back an audience who were almost a verse ahead of him, and still retaining the stillness and pain of that beautiful song. Hats off to him!
Guilty of theft on all counts was Ricky Rojas as Stoner!
Playing this hardened rocker as a mixture of Mick Jagger and Captain Jack Sparrow, Stoner stole every scene he was in. A brilliant comedy performance and a cracking voice to boot.
The men were strongly backed up by very capable females who had the difficult task of portraying some very masculine ‘Rod’ hits.
All in all, this show is non-stop fun backed up with top class Rod hits.
The kind of show that makes you think - “oh yes, he sang that one...and that one...and I had forgotten about that one...now, where’s that old Rod Stewart CD?”
Tonight’s the Night runs at the Millennium Forum in Derry until Saturday, May 17th.