If you want to see a show that has some of the biggest songs to ever hit Broadway and the West End and a storyline from both on and off the stage, then go and see Storming the Barricade.
The four strong cast get through 22 songs in the space of around 50 minutes, which despite being very impressive, is problematic. The cast use short cuts through some of the songs by singing extracts rather than the entire song, which obviously had to be done in order to squeeze so much material into such a short set. However, it is questionable whether it would have worked better to have fewer and achieve more.
The cast of Vicky Buxton, Brad Clapson, Miranda Jones and Peter Nash all work well together, giving real vocal prowess to the shortened songs and allowing each one their own solos amongst the group songs. Particular highlights include a ‘What Is This Feeling’ from Wicked, which is both soulful and well executed. Another brilliant feature of the show is a medley of songs from Les Miserables which has great comic timing within it.
The show is musically sound with good harmonies emanating from the vocal abilities of its performers. It has stylish piano playing from Ben Everett Riley, but the short songs never really allow the cast to showcase their true abilities.
Aided only with a few props and a stage which merely features four clothes rails, the cast to perform well. However fewer songs in the running order would allow the cast to truly shine, as the pace of the show is so fast you never really get a chance to breath.
That said, this is an entertaining hour in the hands of a cast who know what they are doing and are really doing it well. With a diverse selection of songs and a competent cast who are comfortable performing this is a very watchable show.