LAST NIGHT'S REVIEW: Thriller Live, The Mayflower

Thriller Live is at The Mayflower this week

Thriller Live is at The Mayflower this week

First published in News Daily Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Entertainments Editor

IT’S a thriller without a plot.

In this show, returning for its fifth visit to Southampton, the hits just keep on coming.

It’s the next best thing to being able to go back in time for a concert by the King of Pop himself, except you get the mountains of hits from the entire back catalogue of Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5.

But this is very different from a jukebox musical, which normally follows one of two formats – either the Mamma Mia school of shoehorning the hits of Abba into a new narrative or the Jersey Boys style story of the Four Seasons themselves.

The producers of Thriller Live didn’t think they needed an original storyline here.

And in many ways they are right.

Quite apart from the question of how a musical of the controversial star would work, there’s not really time for any chit chat. This is more than two hours of back to back top class music.

It has more relevance than ever since the untimely death of Jackson, always having had the feel of a tribute.

The dance moves and choreography are breath-taking, particularly the disco numbers and moonwalking.

Cleo Higgins is the stand out singer with a voice closest to the Jackson sound.

The finale medley goes down a storm, the costumes are fantastic and I love the video projections, although how MJ can be compared to Mother Theresa and Martin Luther King I’m not entirely sure.

The newest touring version overlooks much of the Motown era, mainly due to the unfortunate omission of the child Jackson, whose solo rendition of Ben always brought the house down.

Still if upbeat, high energy versions of the likes of Blame it on the Boogie, Billie Jean and I Want You Back don’t get you dancing, nothing will.

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