&Juliet is a brand new musical featuring the music of Max Martin, with a book by David West Read. The story focuses on "what if" Juliet hadn't killed herself at the end of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. The show had its world premiere at the Manchester Opera House and I was incredibly lucky to see this masterpiece. The story focuses on "what if" Juliet hadn't killed herself at the end of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet with various plot twists, romance and of course comedy... yes, comedy!
The Company of &Juliet
The main character of &Juliet; Juliet is played beautifully by Miriam-Teak Lee. From the moment she steps onto the stage, she takes the spotlight with her insanely perfect vocals. Teak Lee had many solo numbers in the show and each one of them was faultless as she mastered and balanced her dynamics, timbre and pitch wonderfully.
Oliver Tompsett as Shakespeare gave another outstanding performance with his strong acting skills and astonishing voice. His partner-in-crime; Anne played by Cassidy Janson was an another developed character and Janson nailed all the punch lines and delivered her sass and charisma very well, and her vocals just topped it all up!
Melanie La Barrie as the nurse was simply hilarious and I loved every scene La Barrie was in. Jordan Luke Gage as Romeo had many entrances with the audience going mad every time he came on as he is just pure talent. Tim Mahendran as Francois was incredible and it was actually amazing how Mahendran developed since his stage debut in Spring Awakening over a year ago. Mahendran will definitely go very far in this industry as he just keeps on getting better and better, stronger and stronger.
The ensemble of this show is one of the strongest and very talented ensembles I have seen in past. A huge well done goes to them!
For me, Arun Blair-Mangat stole the show as Juliet's best friend May. Honestly, I cannot express how stunning the performance Blair-Mangat gave. His acting from the moment he walked on was super believable and he literally lived his character on stage. His big Act One number; "I'm not a girl, not yet a woman" was sublime in every way and left a tear of amazement in my eye as his voice was almost flowing through the song with unbelievable vocal technique and control. Blair-Mangat mesmerized me throughout the show and his performance is remarkable and will stay with me for quite a long time.
Arun Blair-Mangat as May.
The set designed by Soutra Gilmour was wonderful and it actually surprised me how Gilmour managed to use every bit of the Opera House's stage with rotating revolve, hidden trap doors and many more special effects that I won't spoil for anyone! The set created an excellent balance with impeccable projections by Andrzej Goulding.
This show gets:
Overall, this is a masterpiece of the 21st century and everyone needs to see this! It's "F***in' perfect" as they say!