Theatre Review: The Tailor-Made Man - Arts Theatre, London ✭✭✭

The Tailor-Made Man
Arts Theatre, London

The Tailor-Made Man is the true story of William 'Billy' Haines (Dylan Turner), the silent screen star who was fired by Louis B Mayer (Mike McShane) of MGM Studios because he was gay and refused to marry and give up his lifelong partner Jimmy Shields (Bradley Clarkson) who he meets on set at the studios.

This new musical takes us through the journey of Billy's promiscuous times, Mayer's attempts at getting him to marry screen star Pola Negri (Kay Murphy), Billy quitting the studio scene and ending up being an interior decorator to the stars.

This is one of those early 20's musicals, silent movies-to-talkies genre, which is all good in Singin' In The Rain, with marvellous sets, a huge stage, big orchestra etc etc. However, The Tailor-Made Man is far from this, cooped up on the tiny Arts Theatre stage, the set would be better off in an old school play, the band who do play well, fail to get a mention in the programme.

Performance wise, the singing is good, Dylan Turner's vocals are rather nice to listen to, Mike McShane shines in his couple of numbers, and Faye Tozer does well with the songs she is given. But the piece as a whole is just simply average. It doesn't stick in your mind afterwards, which is a shame really, as it does have the potential to be a good little show.

The Tailor-Made Man... a bit short in the arms for me.

3 stars ✭✭✭

Arts Theatre
6-7 Great Newport St
London WC2H 7JB

Performances:  Monday-Saturday 7.30pm*; Thursday and Saturday 2.30pm**
*Tuesday 21 February at 7.00pm; **extra 2.30pm matinee on Wednesday 20 February

Tickets:  £20.00, £30.00, £39.50 (Previews: £10.00, £20.00, £29.50)

Box Office:  020 7836 8463
Facebook:  Tailor Made Man
Twitter:  @TailorMadeManUK