Madagascar The Musical – Gaiety Theatre – Review
Dates: 26th Mar. – 31st Mar at 7pm Daily
It is Marty (Antoine Murray-Straughan) the zebra’s 10th birthday but he’s a bit down about things. He thinks he’s missing out on much excitement by being stuck in a zoo and wants to explore the outside world. When he sneaks out to see New York, his friends in the Central Park Zoo quickly realise he’s gone and set out after him. This sets in motion a chain of events that eventually leads the animals to…. Madagascar!
This is a new production based on the Dreamwork’s film of the same name. It has all the same characters and more or less the same plot, but the main alteration is that it now has a lot more songs! The production moves quickly between tracks, allowing the cast to show off their vocal talents.
The four main characters are all people dressed in animal suits, but the productions also has a multitude of puppets of various types and sizes. The penguins feature heavily and are one of the highlights, as they start their military style manoeuvres to try to get to the Antarctic! After the interval, we are introduced to the madness of King Julien the Lemur and his subjects! The majority of the songs in the production are new to us, but we do have “Move It, Move It!” which is something of a highlight. So good, in fact, they perform it twice!
This is a production by Sellador that is touring the UK and Ireland. Dubin is the first date of an amazing 19 date tour that will bring the cast and crew from Torquay to Aberdeen! The production stars Matt Terry, who won X-factor in 2016. While most pay little attention to the show at this stage, it does seem to guarantee you a career on the stage. He does well with the singing parts but is less successful as an actor. Timmika Ramsay is very enjoyable as Gloria, the sassy hippo and Jo Parsons lights up the stage as King Julien. It’s a great part but he certainly makes the most of it.
Productions of this type are often far too long, but this is a comfortable one hundred minutes including a substantial interval. This play is aimed at kids from three upwards and does everything it can to cater for the younger members of the audience. There’s a multitude of cuddly creatures on stage and much singing and dancing. That’s not to say it’s a long evening for adults, as the puppets are very entertaining for all ages. The production steps up a gear after the interval with the introduction of King Julien and his cohorts. It’s a well constructed anthropomorphic tale for the whole family.