Hearing Caissie Levy singing ‘With You’ from Ghost The Musical, and singing it so well, cast my mind back to the time when I heard it sung so badly by Sarah Harding in a subsequent touring production of that show when it came to New Wimbledon Theatre (the following night, I was at the final performance of Half A Sixpence at the Chichester Festival Theatre: to misquote Charles Dickens, it was the worst of times, and then it was the best of times). It was also a pleasure to hear her talk about the creative process involved in bringing the role of Molly Jensen to the stage in Britain and then on Broadway.
An acoustic version of ‘Good Morning Starshine’ and ‘Aquarius’ from the musical Hair was a different take on those standards, and things rounded off with a rousing rendering of ‘Let It Go’ from the Broadway musical Frozen, a production of which will open at Theatre Royal Drury Lane in late 2020 – one hopes with her reprising her Elsa, even for a limited period. A particularly poignant moment came when she was talking about her pregnancy whilst she was playing Fantine in the 2014 Broadway production of Les Misérables. She would hear ‘Bring Him Home’ backstage – Ramin Karimloo played Jean Valjean in that production – and sing it to her yet unborn son, a rather unique interpretation of that prayer. To hear it in this concert gave it extra poignancy.
Supporting Levy was Ashley Park, known to Broadway audiences but making her London concert debut at this gig – it appeared to me she came over at least partially out of geographical convenience, taking some time out from filming something or other in Paris. Tunes from an eclectic range of sources – Carole King, Rent and Wicked were all in there – combined from some interesting anecdotes added up to a pleasant and enjoyable night out.
London lad, loving life and all that it has to offer.