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The Mighty Jukebox

12:00 am 7:00 am

The New Vic Theatre – Do I Love You?

Written by on 31 January 2024

Do I love You – The New Vic Theatre – Review by Hitmix Radio

Written and Directed by John Godber

Photographs courtesy of Ian Hodgson

The New Vic was packed to the rafters, and there was an air of anticipation and excitement – two possible reasons – the writer or the subject matter.  Probably a combination of the two. Glancing around, a mature audience in the main (I include myself in that!), but back in the 1970’s, we were all young!!

The whole thing was a simple affair set in current post-covid times – very minimal props and setting, three main characters Sally, Nat and Kyle – all young, all working at a fast-food establishment … ’do you want fries with that’.   Just three actors throughout Martha Godber, Emilio Encinoso-Gil and Chloe McDonald, playing the main characters and any incidental characters.  They all did an incredible job and never missed a beat throughout.

Obviously, it goes without saying, the music was fantastic!  The conversation was simple but it fitted with the subject matter.  And to all of those people in there who frequented the Torch and The Casino, it reminded them of their younger days – getting through the week, earning enough to survive and living for the weekend.  The music was a passion and was all that mattered.

The three young characters developed a love for Northern Soul and attended a weekender, where everyone on the dance floor was graceful, agile and energetic ….. but also old – there was reference to someone going down into a back drop and not getting up and the paramedics collecting him on a stretcher. And we have to laugh at that.  Us old soulies.  The character ‘Keith on the door’ was incredibly realistic and believable.

I have heard that John Godber who wrote and directed this play loves his Northern Soul.  It is obvious that he understands ‘the scene’.  My main thought was that I would love to root through Sally’s nan’s record box – I bet it’s worth a fortune!!

The age guide is 14 plus as there is a bit of strong language – but non of it gratuitous – I’m not a fan of swearing in the theatre but somehow, it fitted in this play.

There was a lot of laughter throughout and a big cheer when the Torch and the Kings Hall was mentioned.  At the end, there was a well deserved standing ovation, one of the best I have ever seen, so good that the three young actors seemed moved by it.  An easy FIVE STARS for this great play.

BUT it’s only here until Saturday – if you love soul, don’t miss it as it conjures up some great memories.  Even if you don’t love soul, it is a great night out.