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Review: Pretty Woman at The Palace Theatre ‘takes the original to another level’

With much hype, would Palace Theatre's adaption of Pretty Woman live up to expectations? Read on to find out..
Pretty Woman

The buzz around Pretty Woman has been electric, and having seen it, it’s easy to see why.

With a long queue to get into Palace Theatre, you could hear mutterings like ‘How will the stage show compare to the original’ while people take selfies on the red carpet outside.

Pretty Woman the Musical

Pretty Woman the musical is based on the 1990 film, Pretty Woman, starring Julia Roberts and Richard Gere as Vivian and Edward.

The musical follows the same rom-com storyline and similar costume designs to the film.

Vivian struts onto stage in her unforgettable black thigh-high boots, white and blue cut-out mini dress and a blonde bob, ready to make her mark in Hollywood.

Paige Fenlon as Vivian Ward

For the musical, Vivian Ward is played by Manchester’s own Paige Fenlon during the show’s run at the iconic Palace Theatre.

Set in the 80s, Vivian and her best friend Kit are walking down Hollywood Boulevard trying to make enough money to pay their rent.

The stage is filled with glowing neon signs pointing to food vendors and late-night clubs.

The show kicks off with Welcome To Hollywood, sung by Ore Oduba and Natalie Paris as the Happy Man and Kit, the ensemble dances around them in stereotypical 80s fashion.

You can get tickets to this outstanding production by clicking here

Ore Oduba’s amazing dancing

Pretty Woman
Ore Oduba stealing the show

I knew Ore could dance, but he is absolutely made to be on the theatre stage!

The vibes and expectations are high from the opening number and the show certainly does not disappoint.

Not long after the audience is introduced to Vivian’s home of Hollywood, she meets Edward, a very rich businessman.

He quickly whisks her away to the fanciest hotel in Hollywood, with the promise of money.

He takes her to the Beverly Wiltshire, managed by the one and only Mr Thompson, played by Ore also.

Ore plays multiple roles in the show, the Happy Man handing out maps to the stars’ homes, the manager of the famous Beverly Wiltshire hotel, he even pops up from the orchestra pit!

He carries the musical well, allowing the scenes to effortlessly flow into one another, elevating the audience’s expectations.

While Vivian is happy to be wined and dined, she does have one boundary, no kissing!

She gets a taste of the finer things in life while living at the hotel with Edward.

Iconic scenes on the stage

That well-known shopping trip, breakfast in bed and a trip to the opera.

Of course, no fancy hotel is complete without a team of helpful staff.

With one stand-out character, Giulio, played by Noah Harrison is hilarious. His quick wit combined with physical comedy elements, like dusting with Vivian’s wig, had the audience in stitches.

His cheeky grin, with his shoulders up to his ears, provided a campy fun element to scenes that would otherwise be a chunk of necessary but perhaps uneventful dialogue.

The musical stays true to the original film, but the music and songs take it to another level to attract a new audience 30 years after the film’s first release.

The talented singers like Paige and Ore allow you to get lost in the musical and the romantic fantasy of it all, without it being cheesy. If you don’t book tickets to see this right now, you’re making a big mistake, HUGE!

Tickets for Pretty Woman at The Palace Theatre

Tickets are on sale here and Pretty Woman the musical runs from the 27th of February to the 16th of March 2024 at the Palace Theatre, Manchester.

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