Ghost The Musical really lifts the spirits
Ghost The Musical, the latest production by Newark Amateur Operatic Society, is so good it is frightening.
A great cast featuring lots of talent, a mixture of new and familiar faces to the society, brought the musical to life on the opening night at the lovely Robin Hood Theatre, Averham, last night.
The production, which continues until Saturday, is a sell-out so if you are lucky enough to have a ticket you are in for a treat.
William Dewick is outstanding as Sam Wheat, a loved-up banker. The part was played by Patrick Swayze in the film, so there were some big shoes to fill, but he more than lives up to the challenge.
He is perfectly partnered with Natasha Logan as his beautiful artist girlfriend Molly Jensen. There is a real chemistry between them as their love affair progresses in their new apartment in Brooklyn.
Exceptional too is Daniel Spendlow as the couple's friend Carl Bruner, a fellow high-powered banker. He brings round beers and take-aways but he is not as caring as he appears and his desperation for money leads to the murder of Sam and heartbreak for Molly.
All three have great voices for the big songs in the show and their harmonies are superb.
Andrea Chapman brings plenty of comedy to the production as the dodgy psychic Oda Mae Brown. Sam turns to her for help when his ghost struggles to communicate with Mollie to warn her of danger.
She had some Whoopi Goldberg size shoes to fill but excelled in the part.
The scenery and set is a real strength of the production. A stage travelator and screen projections are a really clever way to take the audience from the tranquility of the couple's loft apartment to the hustle and bustle of Wall Street and the overcrowded subways.
The designer was Justin Day who is also great as the angry subway ghost Furgeson who teaches Sam how to move objects around using the power of his mind so he can haunt his former friend.
Dean Matthew Skiba worked his magic again with some very slick choreography and the music is in the safe hands of musical director Paul O'Leary.
The director is Mike Follen, a head teacher by day. He and his team deserve a gold star and ten out of ten for this production. LAM