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Sweeney Todd

Photo copyright Mark Cooney from Spotted in Ely

Viva’s production of ‘Sweeney Todd’ at the Brook in Soham was a fine production.

Stephen Sondheim’s musicals can be quite challenging and this was no exception, but as expected, Viva rose to the occasion magnificently. The plot had delightful twists, the characters were all credibly portrayed and the music, often quite complex, was splendidly presented.

Sweeney Todd

Photo copyright Mark Cooney from Spotted in Ely

Sweeney Todd (played by Richard Dodd) was an imposing ex- convict obsessed with revenge and easily capable of multiple murders. MRS Lovett (Samantha Gallop) was an excellent partner in crime and Judge (David Tickner) was the very epitome of a high and mighty and corrupt judge. The Beggar woman (Angela Bocking) shaped her body into a figure I swear I have seen begging in London, even when among the audience she never lost the character.

Sweeney Todd

Photo copyright Mark Cooney from Spotted in Ely

She managed to create a real sense of sinister insight touched with melodramatic madness. Joanna (Zara Minns) and Anthony (Daniel Lane) were notable stars in the show, their singing particularly impressive and their skillful acting readily portraying their courtship thwarted with mishap. Other believable characters included Beadle (Andy Ward), Tobias (Jordan Thorpe) and Pirelli (Charlie Gillett).

Sweeney Todd

Photo copyright Mark Cooney from Spotted in Ely

The ensemble supported the action particularly well with their strong unswerving voices and their wonderfully choreographed movements and the orchestra enhanced the singing and atmosphere admirably.

The Director Gail Baker and Musical Directors, Richard Hayward and Graham Brown and choreographer Jessica Clifford are to be congratulated for yet another real hit by Viva. This could not have been possible without the tremendous input of Joshua Schumann (producer), Dan Schumann (Associate Director), and the host of other contributors.

Sweeney Todd

Photo copyright Mark Cooney from Spotted in Ely

The next Viva show to look forward to is ‘The Little Mermaid’ at St. Andrew’s Church in Soham from Thursday 14th July to Saturday 16th July tel: Box office (01353) 722 228 www.wegottickets.com.

Meet The Author...
Rosemary Westwell
Who Am I?

Australian-born teacher and writer Dr Rosemary Westwell (PhD, MA Ed, MA TESOL, B Mus. BA Hons) lives in Cambridgeshire, England. She completed her PhD in 2007 on ‘The Development of Language Acquisition in a Mature Learner’ ( available free on: http://eprints.ioe.ac.uk/48/). She writes a column for the Ely Standard, directs a ladies’ choir (‘The Isle Singers’)  and is a member of her local council.

Her husband suffers from dementia and is in a care home. They have two daughters and six children who live in the UK.

Other publications, including ‘Twenty Tips for Teaching IGCSE ESL’, ‘Teaching Language Learners’ and her novels ‘John, Dementia and Me’ and ‘John’s Shadow’ which are  available on www.amazon.com

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