Peaky Blinders: The Redemption of Thomas Shelby - Review

Peaky Blinders: The Redemption of Thomas Shelby - Review


Posted 2022-09-29 by Alison in Birmingham follow

Tue 27 Sep 2022 - Sat 27 May 2023

The status of Peaky Blinders as an iconic classic has never been more apparent as its success crosses into a different genre.

From the hard-hitting TV show, it's now transgressed into dance with this premiere of Peaky Blinders: The Redemption of Thomas Shelby at Birmingham Hippodrome.

Created by Rambert Dance, viewers of Birmingham's Commonwealth Games closing ceremony got an enticing brief snippet of what to expect. Now the time has finally come for the full performance.

In Birmingham, the dance show is on until Sunday October 2 at the Hippodrome but returns again at the end of its UK tour next year from May 23 to 27 to cope with the expected huge demand.

After all, it feels like the hottest theatre ticket in town with a world premiere party of Birmingham City football players and the creator Steven Knight. He was praised for creating the best piece of culture in a generation. In turn, Knight described the show as an extraordinary experience.

From the onset, it's got the essence and attitude of the Peakys down to a tee. The 1920's outfits, the speakeasy bars and scintillating music from the soundtrack. There's even Benjamin Zephaniah - a star of the TV show as Jeremiah - playing the narrator in a recording to accompany the dance.

Starting off with the First World War, it shows how the minds of the Shelby brothers and their friends were ravaged on the battlefield. It's a furious, impressive start with a hugely talented inclusive cast that even includes a dancer with one leg.

Accompanying them is a drummer and two guitarists on stage, who continue the thrilling rock soundtrack throughout the two hour performance.

Returning home to Small Heath, they are reunited with Polly and Ada and here the world of gambling, gang fights and Tommy's romance with Grace recreate the storylines from the TV series.

The mannerisms of the cast - particularly Guillaume Queau as Tommy, Connor Kerrigan as Arthur and Simone Damberg Wurtz' Polly - through dance are unbelievably effective. A lot of work has gone into making the audience feel like the Peaky Blinders are in the room with them.

The stage has various levels and a gap between. Dancers jumping over them creates even more energy on stage. It's all cleverly choreographed, right down to every punch, kick and shot of a gun.

The Second Act dips a little as Tommy's indulgence in opium becomes a lengthy section of imaginative but far out ambiguous scenes. It's followed by fight scenes that probably go on a tad too long.

But it soon gets back on track and lifts to a strong finale of a Shelby family dance routine to the iconic theme tune. That was always going to be a winner and it's a fitting way to bring the production to a satisfying close.

Although it's an all dance show, it is easy to follow and accessible for those who don't normally opt to see this kind of performance. Although aimed at Peaky Blinders fans, you'd still be able to understand and enjoy it without having seen the programme.

This is finely crafted, stylish ballet with attitude, by order of the Peaky Blinders no less. For fans of the TV show, it's an unmissable way to rekindle your love affair with the Shelby clan.

RATING: & #9733 ;& #9733 ;& #9733 ;& #9733 ;& #9734 ;

#theatre -reviews
!date 27/09/2022 -- 27/05/2023
70761 - 2023-01-26 01:49:10


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