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Review: Strictly Ballroom at The Lowry is ‘full of love and laughter’

Strictly Ballroom is a delightful show full of love, laughter and mesmerising dance routines.

Strictly Ballroom follows Scott Hastings, a young dancer who has lost a dancing competition because of his crowd-pleasing movements which are not allowed in the dancing industry.

His dance partner leaves him because of this and he learns to dance with his heart through a young woman and dancer named Fran and together they fight for their dance and show everyone that dance isn’t strictly ballroom.

The show starts slightly late, and to welcome us to the show, a voice recording of Craig Revel Horwood himself informs the audience of the time the show takes place and the rules of the show.

Around ten minutes into the show, the cast leaves the stage and the place goes quiet with a sense of anticipation.

We hear voices from the microphones and it starts getting awkward. Then an announcement comes over the stage and informs us of a technical difficulty and how they are trying to fix it.

The problem gets fixed within ten minutes but it did feel longer.

By this point, the cast re-enter the stage and pick up where they left off and it’s smooth sailing from here.

During the first half of the show, there is tension in the air. The actors look nervous that something will go wrong again and they will have to stop the show. There are a couple of mistakes as the dancers bang into each other but the cast plays it off fine.

It did make me nervous slightly but then the cast realised that the show is going great and they get into it.

I don’t think I could write a review of Strictly Ballroom and not mention the reason why everyone is here, (my mum being one of them) Kevin Clifton. A fan favourite of all the Strictly pros.

Going into the show, I didn’t realise that he had a beautiful singing voice. There wasn’t a note missed. My mother’s favourite moment was when Kevin had his shirt opened.

Reminds me of her instant fondness for Micheal O’Reilly in Dirty Dancing. Nevertheless, he was incredible and I have missed him after all those years away from Strictly.

A personal highlight of mine is when Scott (Clifton) meets Fran’s (Played by Faye Brookes) family and her father (Played by Jose Agudo) asks him what dance he is doing with his daughter and that’s when the battle of the pasodobles.

This is the moment that brought it all together for me.

The chemistry between Scott (Kevin Clifton) and Fran (Faye Brookes) is palpable, bringing a delightful and believable romance to the stage.

The movements were sharp, the music was being made with the sound of his feet and one guitar. I was introduced to a dance I have seen many times on TV and I realised, I hadn’t seen it.

The choreography in Strictly Ballroom is a visual feast, blending classic ballroom moves with exciting contemporary twists that keep the audience engaged throughout.

The set design is vibrant and captivating, transporting the audience into the glitzy world of competitive ballroom dancing.

That moment has to be applauded and Agudo was exceptional. I was left speechless.

The story of Strictly Ballroom resonates with audiences of all ages, reminding us to embrace our passions and defy convention.

Given that it is the first show of their Manchester leg, I am certain they will work out the kinks for the rest of the week.

Strictly speaking, the show has promise and I am sure without the mishaps and mistakes, this show will be a hit.

You can get your tickets by clicking here. 

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