The Choir of Man

The Choir of Man is an entertaining, heartfelt, and immersive experience

This performance celebrates one year in the West End and it is easy to see why. From the moment you step into the auditorium, you're transported to a cosy, inviting pub, not just on the stage, but with photos and mementos hanging on the auditorium walls. The immersive experience begins right away.

For those fortunate enough to have tickets in the stalls, the invitation to step onto the stage and enjoy a real pint poured for you at 'The Jungle' sets the mood for a unique evening. The performers come out to mingle and chat with you as you sip your pint. The name "The Jungle" might seem a little forced due to its association with the famous first song of the show "Welcome to the Jungle," but the experience itself is thoroughly enjoyable.

What makes this show even more special is its support for the charity CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably). Throughout the venue, you'll find collection points and QR codes that make it easy for you to donate and contribute to this worthy cause.

Once the audience is ushered off the stage, the main performance kicks into high gear. Clocking in at a non-stop 90 minutes, there's no intermission, so you might want to pace yourself with the drinks if you anticipate needing a bathroom break.

The show's introductions are skilfully delivered by the Poet, portrayed by the talented Mike Hamway. In his Irish accent, he weaves introductions that blend prose and poetry, adding a poignant touch to the evening.

Individual audience members are invited on stage, but there's no need to worry; you won't be asked to sing or dance. The singing throughout the show is nothing short of phenomenal, and the dedication of each cast member is truly remarkable. Ben Goffe, in the role of Handyman, wows the audience with a tap routine that covers the bar, table, steps, and the entire stage area. Tom Miles, as Beast, is an endearing character, especially during a delightful audience participation segment featuring the song "Teenage Dream."

One of the standout moments of the evening was the hysterical toilet scene. Without giving away too much, the scene had the audience in stitches as three characters sang their hearts out while at the urinal.

It's important to note that the show follows a general theme rather than a strict storyline. In the second half (without an interval) the performance tends to stray from the theme, but it treats the audience to some breath-taking vocal performances that more than make up for the narrative departure.

The Choir of Man is an entertaining, heartfelt, and immersive experience that celebrates the spirit of human nature, and it's easy to see why it is thriving in the West End. It's a night out that leaves you with a warm feeling and a newfound appreciation for the power of music and community. Cheers to The Choir of Man for a spectacular evening!

This show was reviewed on the 10th October 2023.  The Choir of Man runs at the Arts Theatre until the 18th February 2024.  Tickets available here: The Choir of Man | Official West End Tickets (choirofmanwestend.com)

Review written by Valentine Gale-Sides

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