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Theatre Review: The Bodyguard - Edinburgh Playhouse ✭✭✭✭✭

Review by Ellen Cree

If comedy, romance, suspense and tragedy along with the iconic music of Whitney Houston is what you look for in a theatre production, then The Bodyguard is the musical for you. It's a dangerously exciting show that will leave you wanting more.

The Bodyguard follows the story of the six time Grammy Award winner Rachel Marron (Alexandra Burke) who is under threat when a dress is stolen from her dressing room and a mysterious letter is left in it’s place by a crazy stalker. Her entourage proceed to hire the best bodyguard in the business, Frank Farmer (Stuart Reid) to protect Rachel along with her young son Fletcher (T’jai Adu-Yeboah) and her sister, Nicki (Melissa James). As the show progresses, the stalker’s activity becomes more terrifying and threatening, leaving the audience petrified of the consequences. Unless you have a heart of stone, you will be left in tears as the ultimate misfortune takes place.

Alexandra Burke, who won The X Factor in 2008, brings the iconic role of Rachel Marron to life with her extraordinary voice. I cannot give Burke enough praise as I have been a fan of hers for a number of years now. Stuart Reid also did a fantastic job in his role, and had the whole audience in fits of laughter during his rendition of ‘I Will Always Love You.’ Melissa James brought a sweetness to her role as well as her also incredible voice, and T’jai Adu-Yeboah was absolutely adorable.

Mensah Bediako as Bill Devaney, Adam Venus as Sy Spector, Siôn Lloyd as Tony Scibelli and Glen Fox as Ray Court also deserve a lot of praise for perfectly bringing their warm, protective, lovable characters to life, and may I add that their comic timing is great! Along with this, we of course cannot forget Mike Denman’s chilling portrayal of The Stalker. His appearances take the audience by surprise and provide a chilling undercurrent throughout the show.

With the exception of the beautifully wild performance costumes Rachel Marron and her performers wear, and the stunning gowns worn during the production, the costumes are simplistic and fitting for the more toned down scenes. I also found myself awfully impressed with the set and the way scene changes were carried out. The special effects as a whole were brilliant!

I honestly can’t say enough good things about this production, and never in all the dozens and dozens of times I've visited The Playhouse, have a seen a full standing ovation like I saw at The Bodyguard. The audience all remained on their feet for the bows and for a sing/dance along finale to one of Whitney Houston’s ‘I Wanna Dance With Somebody.’

The Bodyguard is at the Edinburgh Playhouse until 10th October. For tickets and information visit www.atgtickets.com/Edinburgh

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