Heathers the Musical has finally hit Stoke-on-Trent! Review by Mel Osborne
For those unfamiliar with the 1988 film its based on, it is known as being the Mean Girls of the 80s…
The original film starring Winona Ryder and Christian Slater was a must watch for the average teen.
This dark comedy has been produced by Bill Kenwright and directed by Andy Flickman. It won best new Musical at the Whats on Awards 2019 and is now touring the UK.
Veronica Sawyer hates school and is a nobody until she befriends the school’s popularity pack – three girls all named ‘Heather’ and they all take a shine to her due to her talent of forging other people’s handwriting.
However, they get her to do things that plays on her conscious.
Enter mysterious team rebel JD who takes her down a very dark path indeed, which leads to a some very unfortunate events.
This is not a show for the faint hearted. It is delightfully wicked but makes some great points about high school life. The original film was made as a satire of the very popular but sometimes sickly-sweet Brat pack films of the time. It was described as a fantasy revenge film and if you were ever a victim of a school bully you could relate.
However, the show explores how actually teenagers make mistakes when they are young. They aren’t always the same person as they grow up and everyone needs the chance to make amends.
Heathers is a technicoloured masterpiece. It is pure joy to watch from beginning to end despite the dark theme.
Jenna Innes as Veronica Sawyer is a gifted young performer and portrays the character with a fresh perspective.
Her voice belts out number after number with an undeniable stamina. Her energy is matched by Verity Thompson as Heather Chandler who is wonderfully terrifying as the Queen Bee of the Heathers and blasts out an amazing rendition of ‘Candy Store’.
Jacob Fowler plays the brooding JD and brood he does with a wonderful dose of cheekiness. He beautifully plays a complex, damaged character. However, all the cast are strong, entertaining and very funny.
The music is new, fresh and starts to become quite catchy especially with numbers such as – ‘You’re Welcome,’ Dead Girl Walking and My Dead Gay son – which particularly bought the house down!
Covers of films can be invariably hit and miss but just recently producers are knocking it out of the park with new, fresh quality productions and Heathers is certainly one of them!
Heathers explores dark themes such as suicide, murder and eating disorders so it has an age recommendation of 14 plus. It is always a delight when new West End productions tour and Stoke- on-Trent welcomes them with arms open wide. Heathers is a fantastic show and one that could certainly be watched multiple times. Get your shoulder pads out and head down to the Regent to catch this killer show!
Heathers is at The Regent until Saturday 15 April. Ticket information HERE
(All images by Pamela Raith Photography)
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