Selladoor’s touring production of Flashdance continues to shine light and pizzazz with a strong fusion of two worlds moulded into 80s’ pop glitz and grit. Now in its 10th year, both themusical (based on the 1983 Paramount Film classic by Tom Hedley) and a collaborative company capture the heart and feeling of the age with universal and contemporary relevance.
By the finale a standing ovation led the audience to feel part of the tale on stage
A strong steel framework of inter-changeable structures embody the metallic arc and sets the scene for performances that reflectively weld past ambitions with contemporary moral understanding of mismanagement and dream—all while enabling the 80s’ vibe to successfully fill the large auditorium of the Edinburgh Playhouse.
This musical continues to be a dancer’s feel-good fantasia, complete with sweat bands and projected imagery reminiscent of the era, while also being a stylish call to follow our hearts. However, the iconic imagery did not take away from the bold symmetry. Out of the shadows came tales seeming universal in nature, with Andrew Ellis’s lighting perfectly highlighting the dark undercurrents and rock’n’roll ambition of the ensemble of characters.
From the outset this talented young cast performed the high-spirited music by Robbie Roth (with Lyrics by Robbie Roth and Robert Cary) with poise and flair. Led by George Carter, the band supported the thrill of the 80s’ pop dance style thrust upon the stage with glorious energy by all the cast.
Naturally, this included the film’s iconic What a feeling and I love Rock and Roll.
A passionate Verity Jones as Alex and empathetic if exuberant Colin Kiyani playing Nick Hurley were supported by a distinguished ensemble in strong performances reflective of their characters’ ambitions; there were particularly engaging performances from Sia Dawn as Kiki and Hollie-Ann Lowe as Gloria.
It was clear that the cast engaged with the fun and fizz intended, engaging, yet honest relationships where I found myself wanting the characters to ‘come good’. By the finale a standing ovation led the audience to feel part of the tale on stage, proving—as Carol Ball’s Hannah says at one point—that“every dancer [can] disappear into the moves”, and why we need to follow our dreams.