Tickets and more information: https://www.thevaults.london/teddy
Running until: 3rd June 2018
Production photos by: Scott Rylander
A mix of live music and theatre blend together perfectly in the new 1950s rock’n’roll musical Teddy, now playing at the Vaults. Set in London at the birth of a new musical phenomenon, the show follows Teddy and Josie during one rebellious Saturday night as they bond over their love for the band Johnny Valentine and the Broken Hearts and try to get into their secret show.
The incredible music of Johnny Valentine and the Broken Hearts soars the moment you step into the auditorium with the band playing before the show starts. Dougal Irvine’s rocking score is electrifying and heart pounding. The band consists of Dylan Wood leading as Johnny Valentine with a quiff and a leather jacket to put John Travolta to shame. On bass is Freya Parks as straight talking Jenny O’Malley with Andrew Gallo as Sammy “The Sticks” Smith and musical director Harrison White as Buster Watson on guitar. I couldn’t help but feel Johnny Casino and the Gamblers (The DNCE version from Grease Live!) vibes from them. The execution of the incredible score works well in a place like the Vaults, to the point where there is a free gig from the band straight after the story ends. I must note, there was also a free bar during the gig at the performance I attended; great for my fellow audience members but not the greatest for this non-alcohol consumer!
Molly Chesworth and George Parker play the couple at the centre of the play, Josie and Teddy, respectively. Chesworth brings a vulnerable edge to Josie underneath the attitude and rebellion she projects. She has brilliant chemistry with Parker as Teddy as they start to feel attracted to one and other as soon as they lock eyes with each other. Parker also delivers a vulnerable edge to his performance. Teddy could so easily be portrayed as a Danny Dyer reject but instead the audience are treated to a young man who is trying to forget about his life back home and is set on becoming the next Johnny Valentine.
Tristan Bernays stunning, poetic, rhythmic writing is beautiful to listen to and creates an exciting story with a climatic ending. In addition, Christopher Nairne’s stunning lighting design is transporting, moving the audience from a cinema to a club to out on the streets while they’re in their seats. Tom Jackson Greaves’ stunning choreography is quite minimal but really comes to shine in act 2. Eleanor Rhode has directed a fantastic live experience, guaranteed to leave audiences wanting more. I honestly adored this show so much; this story of two young people being brought together by music made me think about the friendships I’ve made by bonding over live music and live theatre. There is an official album that is available on CD and on streaming sites containing Dougal Irvine’s original songs performed by the band which I cannot wait to listen to over and over again.
Until next time,