Jersey Boys (UK Tour), Palace Theatre Manchester | Review

Jersey Boys 

05/02/19
Palace Theatre Manchester
Reviewed by Mia Goddard
★★★★
Jersey Boys sees Frankie Valli, Tommy De Vito, Nick Massi and Bob Gaudio take us on a feel-good ride through the trials and tribulations of their lives as they write their own songs, create their own unique sounds and climb to the top to become a world-class sensation.
The show opens with an unexpected bold and flashy French rap song before shortly introducing us to Tommy De Vito, played by understudy Peter Nash. The fast-paced story line quickly puts us up-to-date with the mob lifestyle and the boys who are living in between the ‘neighbourhood’ and prison, giving us the first hint of  Tommy’s bad boy demeanour, which although witty and attractive, is sure to bring about some trouble.
In between Tommy’s narrative and the catchy first few numbers, the very mysterious and gruff Nick Massi, played by Lewis Griffiths, also comes to life on stage and what’s not to love? He’s tall, quiet and mysterious, and has the bass voice that sets every song into motion.
Frankie Valli, played by Michael Watson has an incredible falsetto stronger than his modal voice, and is the pinnacle of the show, his first solo, in particular, silencing the room by taking everyone’s breath away and giving a chill down the spine. The height of his voice only grew stronger and more pronounced with each song and with the addition of the final band member Bob Gaudio, played by Declan Egan, the audience was not only singing along and clapping, but cheering at the end of each song as if it were a live concert.
A ten piece band under the direction of Gareth Weedon is hidden away behind the scenes for most of the show with only glimpses of them as they take to the stage for various songs. Drummer Stuart Roberts however spends most of his time on stage as his drum kid gets transported around the stage on a mobile platform.
The set is simple yet effective mirroring the West End version with a video screen at the back of the stage assisting in setting the various scenes throughout the show.
Having gone into the theatre not knowing much about the show, Jersey Boys provided a feel good night with catchy and classic songs that the audience were keen to join in with.