Six at the Vaudeville Theatre
I have reviewed Six numerous times from their start at the Edinburgh Fringe through to its West End transfer and I was lucky enough to invited back on Media night to check out their most recent cast.
For those that haven’t seen Six, the show tells of the Six wives of Henry 8th. The wives group together in order to form a girl group but they have a competition to determine who should be the lead singer. The show is a cross between a pop concert and musical theatre but it has a well earned reputation of one of the best nights out on the West End.
The reason Six is one of the few shows that I would happily see time and time again is due to the fresh take each cast member brings to the role. Of course the alternates and swings bring their own vibe but this difference becomes even more apparent when you see a completely new cast.
At this performance I saw the full slate of the ‘main’ Queens, namely Rhianne-Louise McCaulsky as Catherine of Aragon, Baylie Carson as Anne Boleyn, Claudia Kariuki as Jane Seymour, Dionne Ward-Anderson as Anna of Cleves, Koko Basigara as Katherine Howard and Roxanne Couch as Catherine Parr. These Queens are all absolute icons. McCaulsky has an aura of authority about her which works perfectly for her role. Carson as Anne Boleyn is an absolute rocket, bringing out all of the comedy and bounding round the stage with so much energy and Kariuki as Seymour brings insane vocals to Heart of Stone and riffs like you wouldn’t believe. My favourite Queen always changes from performance to performance and tonight it was Ward-Anderson as Anna of Cleves, she oozed sass and confidence whilst having the audience eating out of the palm of her hands, so much so that she had the ssh the audience after her number, ‘Get Down.’ Basigara as Katherine Howard was wonderfully flirty and her number ‘All You Want To Do’ was another stand out of the night Finally Roxanne Couch had the gravitas needed to pull of Catherine Parr and the backbend that most can only dream of for the iconic Queens shot. s you can tell they were all wonderful individually but together they are the girl group to die for.
For those who have not seen Six before the lyrics and the book by Marlow and Moss are incredibly clever. Not only empowering but witty, it is one of the shows where the more you listen the more and more some of the lyrics click, there are numerous historical references as well as musical theatre puns and many lines delivered with a knowing wink.
The costumes have also gone up a notch since I saw it last. Designed by Gabriella Slade she ensures that all of the Queens look incredible. This was the first time I had seen the Anna of Cleves costume reveal and it goes to show that even 4 years after seeing the show for the first time I can still be delighted by additions such as this. The staging is kept relatively simple, with the Ladies In Waiting i.e. the all female band, on stage and due to the concert format no set changes are needed which means the energy can build and build. The lighting design by Tim Deiling really added to the pop concert vibe with the back wall being used to the maximum effect lighting wise also.
Six has always been a must see but with this cast bringing their own fresh vibe and take on the Queens there is genuinely no better time to book than the present.
Six is on at the Vaudeville Theatre as well as touring the UK. You can find out more and book tickets for the show on their website.