Jersey Boys – 17/06/2014 – A Very Serious Review.

I know what you are all thinking. You think that I couldn’t possibly have written another Jersey Boys review. Or maybe you are wondering why the shitting hell there is actually a child called North West in the world? Or you are maybe even thinking that Willy Wonka has been pronounced once as Willy Wankers and that story now takes on a whole new meaning. I have no clue what any of you are thinking actually. So scrap the first line of this blog. 

This is an actual review today though. A serious (as serious as I can be…..) one. Not just a quick summary of how fit Sandy Moffat looked. Or yet another mention of how Jon Boydon carries the whole production. No. This will be informative and interesting. OK , maybe not interesting. Maybe even not very informative. Oh come on, I really can’t sell this review at all. If you have read previous reviews then you pretty much know what you are going to get. But I will try….. 

Jersey Boys is now my thing. I always had a feeling it would be before I ever saw it. Of course it helped things along nicely when Sandy landed alternate Frankie. But I always knew it was going to be an awesome show. It has turned into my all time favourite,

From the moment people come onto the stage and the music to ‘Oh What a Night!” starts, the grin on my face shows up to stay.  The opening number threw me the first time I watched the show, because I didn’t know what was going on. But now I love it. Especially when Thomas Goodridge is dancing around on stage singing in French. He wasn’t there yesterday and I missed him. 

So yes, I like the first song, but the bit that really gets me is when Jon Boydon as Tommy De Vito walks on to the stage. His voice. His moves. The way he sings the words ‘Earth Angel’ . OK , I’ll stop. The things is, I’m not actually sure we are even supposed to like Tommy. He’s a dick. But he’s my favourite character. (I am also aware Tommy is a real person and not just a character before any of you get picky.) Yes, even over Frankie Valli. I don’t know if it is because of Jon Boydon. I don’t know if I would still love Tommy just as much with somebody else playing him. I guess I will find out one day because the way I have been sucked into Jersey Boys…. it’s a pretty sure bet I will be going back. I will no doubt see ‘another’ Tommy one day and it will be interesting to see how I feel about that. I don’t know if I like Tommy so much because Jon plays him with a vulnerable side. Maybe everyone plays Tommy with a vulnerable side. Who knows. But for me, I don’t see the jerk. I am rooting for Tommy all the way through. And when he disappears for a huge chunk of the second act, I miss him. When he comes back at the end, I woop. Woop city. More on that later. 

The fact that Tommy is my favourite ‘character’ obviously does not impact Sandy Moffat being my all time favourite ever West End performer. I joke around a lot on here and never really take much seriously, but I am being very genuine when I say that nobody will ever beat him on stage. He lights it up. Whether he’s a camp German wearing a very fetching leotard or whether he is playing a superstar like Frankie…. he never fails to amaze me. 

You will not see anything sexier than Sandy singing songs in various suits for a couple of hours. Unless he takes my advice and does The Full Monty/ Magic Mike…. that would probably be sexier. But anyway. You will also see nobody as talented. Just my opinion of course. But my opinion is right. I know it is because one time I thought it was going to rain, and it actually did a few days later so ….. 

While we are on about Sandys Frankie….. I will never get tired of the way he delivers his lines. In particular, just the way he says ‘Yeah’ is enough to make me melt. That is all it takes folks. I’m easily seduced. 

The first standout moment for me other than Tommy first appearing and Frankie running on would have to be Cry For Me. For those that haven’t seen it….. you have Tommy De Vito – (Jerk trying to get a band together), Frankie Valli (Sings like a dream) , Nick Massi (Bass player) and finally …. Bob Gaudio. Bob Gaudio is the final piece of the puzzle. < See, I’m not just drooling at Sandy , I actually take it in. Impressive right?! So Bob auditions for the three other guys and they all stand and sing around a piano while the audience gets transported to a smiley place. 

Yesterdays Bob Gaudio was played by Stuart King. This is the second time I have seen Stuart. He was my first. He popped my Bob Gaudio cherry. The first time I saw him, I loved him. When Jus told me he was the understudy in the interval that day, I was stunned. He was brilliant. I mean…. understudies usually are brilliant to be fair, but sometimes you can tell that they aren’t doing the role every single day. But with Stuart, you couldn’t tell at all. Bob has a hell of a lot of dialogue as well, and he nailed it all that first time. 

The last few times I saw Edd Post who I loved just as much. And then yesterday, as I said before, it was back to Stuart. I don’t think I have ever been that 50/50 on understudy vs main. I will be honest, I have always loved the mains more. I am not being disrespectful, maybe most of the time I just got lucky and saw the mains of any show, not just Jersey Boys,  therefore preferred them in the role. And it isn’t a bad thing to like a main more than the understudy. It is what they get paid for after all. But Stuart King and Edd Post are both so brilliant that I don’t know which one I like better. 

I feel that Edd is a smarter Bob. Bob is a smart character anyway and Edd nails that. He looks intelligent. Stuart brings an innocence that I adore!! He plays the naivety so well. Damn those guys making it so hard to choose!! 

So anyway, Cry For me is perfect. The audience always goes wild for that one. Hearing them all sing together is a wow moment. And I need to say this….. Frankie gets the main vocals. And rightly so. Frankie was known for having an incredible voice and any guy getting to play him will have that same raw talent. But this is a just another praise to Jon Boydon for his vocals. Smoooooooth. Actually, if you are a millionaire and you are reading this …. (could happen) , then please could you ask Sandy, Jon, Matt Nalton and Edd/Stuart to do an album for me. And pay them nicely. Thanks. 

Then of course…. we get Sherry, Big Girls Don’t Cry and Walk Like A Man. Ah. Oh. I love Tommy again during all this. His whole Walk Like A Man confusion is adorable. 

I always get excited when Tommy and Nick come along in their vests. Not just because most of these men on stage have good arms … (It’s an important quality….) . Bob Gaudio finally erm…. how do we put this nicely? Well, he finally does the dirty and then music magic happens. And all through Bob Gaudio doing his funny walk thing because he just got laid, there are still men in vests on stage. I feel like this is a good moment. And you know, Tommy takes the piss a bit out of Bob while singing about ‘it’ ending much too soon. And that just makes me think that Tommy goes the distance. So again, very important quality. 

This section halts the smut for just a second to praise the girls up. They come on for their song My Boyfriends Back and every time I have seen the show, I grow to like these girls more and more. They work hard. So the girls of Jersey boys completely rock it. And I think Emma Stephens is brilliant. Oh and Nicola Brazil. She is ace. 

Back to the smut. Ooops. I mean my review. My very serious review. Can you win an Oscar for reviews? Not an Oscar, but you know….? Because I think this should be a contender,. I am positive that anyone reading will book tickets to see the show immediately. I sell it so well. (Actually, not even joking, book tickets. It is a must see show.) 

My Eyes Adored You is ironic really because all of our eyes are adoring Sandy (Or any Frankie) at that particular point. I do love it when all the lads sing together under a lamp post though. And when they all just have their jackets slung over their shoulders like sexy brooding people who… who just wear their jackets on one shoulder really well. 

The first act ends after you have sat through hip thrusts, ape songs, actual songs and just general Jersey Boys greatness. 

The second act is amazing. As amazing as the first. I don’t really have a favourite act. I like them both the same. In Rock Of Ages I always preferred the second act. Might have a small part to do with Hit Me With Your Best Shot. Might not. I keep my feelings on my love for Franz in a leotard secret. 

Anyway, I have touched upon the Nick Massi rant before , but I LOVE it. I have only seen Matt Nalton as Nick. I am sure his understudy is fab also, but I’m not even sure if anybody can quite bang their head on the table the way he does. And he shouts ‘TEN YEARS’ to perfection. Although he very nearly makes me fall out of love with Tommy when he lets it be known he wears the same underwear for three days and pisses in the sink. Very nearly, but not quite. I can forgive Tommy. Because he’s not real. Well he is real. The Jersey Boys were all real. But you know…. what I am saying is…. in my head, Tommy has perfect personal hygiene and knows what a toilet is. That is all that matters really…..Once again, Matt Nalton can do no wrong as Nick. In fact, as two elderly audience members walked past me at the end, they both said that “The lovely gentleman who plays Nick” is their favourite. Nick Massi and Tommy De Vito have always been played by Matt and Jon for my trips to the JB house. It will be weird seeing others in the part but I am always fair. If they are sexy and have nice arms, I will give them credit. Oh, and of course…. if they play the part well. 

Beggin’ . Not sure I can write a paragraph about this without being rude. I actually think the whole price of the ticket is worth it for that one dance at the start of this song. Woop City comes back at Beggin’ . I woop through the whole show though so it’s hardly a surprise. Yesterdays Beggin’ dance was particularly sexy so thanks Sandy. 

The little Stay + other songs medley is one of my favourite parts of the show . I will never be able to sing Stay again without doing the hand movements. And the song came on at work the other day. The problem with me doing the actual dance moves to Stay and singing loudly is the fact that I am not a sexy Jersey Boy. It doesn’t look as good on a dorky girl with no ability to dance or sing. Or even walk in a straight line gracefully. 

Before I talk about Can’t Take My Eyes Off You, I just need to say that out of all my Jersey Boys shows, yesterdays was Sandys best. I thought his vocals were better than they ever have been and he is really sinking into the role of Frankie now. He was on fire. He was so on fire that quite a few people stood up for him after Can’t Take My Eyes Off You. I’ve not seen that yet and I was thrilled. When that happens to a performer you really enjoy, you sit there feeling proud. You want to turn to the people next to you and say, “If you think that was good, you should see him in a blue sparkly leotard.” Not sure they would really get it but still. I will never get tired of seeing the audiences reaction to Can’t Take My Eyes Off You. To any Frankie, not just Sandy. When Matt Thorpe played Frankie, the reaction to this song was unbelievable. And by this point in the show, if you aren’t grinning and clapping badly out of time (Sorry Jon Boydon….) then you probably have no soul. 

Working my Way Back To You comes along and gets every girl in the audience in a bit of fluster. You are in such a good mood when these songs finish that by the time the sad reality of Fallen Angel comes, it wounds you. Don’t do that to me Jersey Boys. I can’t sit there grinning then crying in the space of a few minutes. I’m a robot. I don’t often feel emotions. Take them away!

The fact that this was a reality for Frankie Valli makes it harder of course. It’s not fake. It’s not a show made to have drama in it. It is a real life tragedy that happened. And one which happens to people everyday. And that is what Jersey Boys boils down to. They were just four guys who made an incredible blend together, who had the ups and downs of everyday life. It’s why people have connected with the story. They didn’t throw in a bunch of stupid stuff in the hope it would boost sales. They kept it true to their lives. So yes, Sandy breaks your heart as a bereaved Frankie Valli and now we are moving on because tears will completely make the ink run. No I am not writing this with parchment paper and a feather quill but I wish I was. 

When all four of the guys are reunited on stage once more to sing rag doll, i get excited. Yes. Mainly because after a long absence, Jon Boydon returns to the stage. Man it is good to see Tommy again! “Is this like being in a fucking time machine or what?” . Ah. Cutie. I don’t know. i clearly have an issue with men. 

By the time the guys start singing Who Loves You , I am in Jersey Boys heaven. The show goes so bloody quick though. I guarantee anyone who hasn’t seen it yet that by the time you reach this song, you will be hoping that it’s not actually the end and they will just carry on singing and dancing for the next few hours/days/weeks. The crowd really did enjoy yesterdays performance, and that always makes the show better as well. I am not even on the stage and I get happy when I see such a great reaction so those guys must love it. Plus, you know the show was a success when after sitting next to an elderly gent throughout the whole show who looked like he had a scowl on his face the entire time,, he turns to his dear little wife/companion and says ‘Wonderful’. He meant it. That man summed it up for everyone in one word really. Wonderful. Indeed, 

A little thing that bugs me though, and I am going to say it. There are guys on that stage who sweat their asses off playing instruments throughout the show. They get their moment at the end after the cast walk off stage , and a lot of people leave the theatre before these guys finish playing. Why? Come on, it doesn’t take much to stand there and clap these people who have contributed to the show so greatly. Without these guys, there would be no show. And plus, why wouldn’t you wanna stay and boogie on down to the music. People also used to do that at Rock Of Ages when the guitarists were still on stage playing, they just used to walk out. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s because they want their chat at stage door, maybe it’s because they want to get home, but to me… the show is not finished until these guys finish playing. Simple as that. I looked behind me when the music was still going on to see nearly four rows empty. Not good. Yes you can do that at a cinema, but these are real actual human beings standing there playing for your entertainment. Show them a little respect. Rant over. 

In conclusion, yesterdays show was fucking ace balls. I don’t sum it up quite as nice as the old man next to me did but never mind. 

I have to do this next bit. I’m sorry but I do. I will sometimes speak about stage door in my blogs, and sometimes not. Nobody really gives a crap about stage door unless it actually happened to them and I had some moments happen yesterday that I have to talk about for myself rather than anybody else other wise I will scream. 

If you read my blog (apologies to those who do, let’s get you a brain scan asap….) , then you will know that a few weeks back, having never met Michael Watson, Interacted with him or seen him on stage, I said that I wanted to see his Frankie. Skip to a few weeks later after watching him on TV and reading about three of his tweets, I was sold. That was all it took. I tweeted him once or twice to let him know I intended on booking his Frankie up soon. You may also remember I asked if he was on the day Sandy was off sick. I was disappointed at first when he very kindly replied that he wasn’t, but soon got over that when Matt Thorpe blew us away. (More on Matt Thorpe soon…..) . Anyway…. I stumbled across a youtube video a few days ago of Michael and the boys performing Jersey Boys songs at Oxford Street  and I may have watched it more than once. And yes, I will admit it, he has dreamy eyes OK ? OK. 

So as me and Jus make our way to Stage Door, I am still on a bit of a high from the show. I’m not even sure me and Jus were even speaking to each other, when  I turned to see Michael Watson walking along . He was heading into the theatre and my mouth just dropped. Don’t ask me why. I am cringing even thinking about it. I literally couldn’t have looked anymore fangirlish if I tried. And I have never even seen the bloke on stage. I think Darren Criss or Chord Overstreet could have walked down the street naked and I wouldn’t have even reacted the way I did when Michael walked down. Super embarrassing. Michael being A) lovely and B) maybe concerned for my welfare and why I was standing there having a mini freak out, to his credit said hi. Oh my god. He was smiley, chatty and his eyes are real. I mean, most peoples eyes are. But….. 

It just stunned me. Yes we were standing outside his place of work and yes he had to be at work in a matter of hours, but I am too pre-occupied with thinking that I can’t interact with any humans, especially Sandy and co considering I had been up since 4am, working since 6am on a really hard delivery and traipsing around on delayed trains. I looked rough as a dogs arse and Michael Watson appears. Let’s be honest here, I barely look presentable on the best of days, let alone then…… jeez. 

Jus could probably tell you that I made a complete fool out of myself. I literally started waffling on to Michael about how we are coming to see him. I just rambled nonsense. I was in that much of a daze that I can’t even really remember what I said. All I know is that whatever happened in those few minutes were wonderful. Michael Watson is friendly. And a complete charmer. And I am now desperate to see his Frankie. He walked into the theatre and I was still in a daze. 

Sandy of course came out before I had got my head together. Not that it matters. Sandy has never ever seen me acting as a normal human being so I shouldn’t really panic about that. 

Yes guys, I met Michael Watson and I freaked the hell out. But I should make it very clear that Sandy remains top of my fucking huge pyramid of man hunks. Talented, polite and he looks OK sometimes. Fine.He looks great.  All the time. He’s a dish. 

Lucy , a girl from the Rock Of Ages days who I am sure everybody knows was there as well and it was really good to see her. 

Like I said, I can’t remember anything word for word that happened and these stage door stories are completely boring. But I need to write it down a bit so I remember the huge list of how not to act at a stage door. It will be handy for future reference. I know I told Sandy that Jus was The Smoffat fan page runner. She didn’t look too thrilled I dobbed her in but he already knew considering she gave him a goodie bag from The Smoffats the other day. Sandy was very sweet and said thanks to her. 

I then told Sandy that we were disappointed to see him because Michael Watson usually does a Tuesday matinee. Don’t all shout me guys. I’m pretty sure he knows I didn’t mean it. Unfortunately for him, he knows he landed himself a fangirl who is here to stay. I did tell him I didn’t mean it. I think. I don’t know. It was all a blur. When you actually have Sandy Moffat standing in front of your face you lose sense of your social skills. And I don’t have great social skills at the best of times. 

Matt Thorpe came out as we were chatting to Sandy. He was actually on the phone but we all sort of swooned when he walked out and he ended his phone call. When I say we all swooned, Sandy didn’t. I don’t think. He may have. Maybe Matt has that impact on him as well. It was a good day for great looking men, I’m not going to lie. Anyway, what I was going to say is that I hope Matt didn’t hang up just because of us standing there looking like we were ready to pounce on him, but I think he did which just means he is really polite. I never expect any of these guys to stop and chat. I go to the stage door in the hope I would get to say to one or two of them it was a great show. Not to take up their time. 

That was a really long and boring story about some guy being on the phone but there is a point to it just because….. I don’t know. But there is. 

Matt Thorpe is a seriously lovely guy. Very down to earth and funny. He even took it in good nature when I told him I liked his parents better than him and when we got on to him about his lack of tweets. And we got a picture !! I will always be thrilled that we got to see his first Frankie. 

Image

Thanks Matt!! Because obviously you are reading this. Ahem. 

He’s a good guy. I would be more than happy to see his Frankie again one day. With Sandy, Michael and Matt, I need a lottery win please. 

Jus and I waited with Lucy who was meeting her friend, and as we were waiting……. Michael Watson came out again. Oh my gosh. Lucy is one of his biggest fans and has met him loads before. She is a natural with him. I’m pretty sure I had my stupid face going on again. My actual words to Michael the second time round were something like….. 

“We were hoping you would be on today. We got Sandy. Ugh.”

I then had to remember that Michael has no clue who I am. He has no clue I’m a huge Sandy fan. He has no clue I speak sarcasm as a second language. So when his little (dreamy) face looked stunned by my words and he actually said ‘Awww’ in defense of Sandy, I had to VERY QUICKLY state that i’m a Sandy fangirl. 

To which Michaels whole face lit up…….. 

“Are you guys The Smoffats?!”

I pointed to Jus who looked absolutely mortified and Michael gave her a high five. That was awesome. Jus hates me for that but….. she should definitely own it. Michael was an absolute sweetie and told her he loved the name and stuff. We also have no clue how he knows what The Smoffats even is, but he does. 

I once again got swept away by his dreamy eyes while probably making a tit of myself a few more times. I know they are just normal people like us, but they are you know….. talented. My only talent is being able to count to ten. I’m quite the mathematician. They are also really good looking. Intimidating. And again I have to state that Michael Watson is lovely. Really nothing else to it. I am so happy I got to meet him even if I did look like a crazy fangirl. I think everyone knows the deal with me now. Fangirl central. It’s a disease. i may never be cured. 

The stage door nonsense is nearly over. I promise. There is just one more bit to the story….. 

We were still waiting for Lucys friend when Jon Boydon headed back to the theatre. I was sitting on the step outside the theatre thinking we were safe from further cast people ….. ooops.Not because I am scared of them, but because I am scared of making an arse of myself. These guys luckily won’t remember speaking to me at stage door, but I will remember acting like a twat forever.  Jon stopped and spoke. Lovely man. Said it a few weeks ago, saying it again. I think he’s great and genuine. 

I can’t really remember the full conversation but I know I said that we were stalking him. Followed by no we weren’t stalking him. I have no clue what comes out of my mouth at the best of the times. He asked if we were coming back to the show that night. I bet in his head he was thinking….. “Say no, say no….” So I clearly hadn’t learnt my lesson from earlier and chipped in with how we might because we wanted to see Michael and got Sandy instead and how disappointing it all was. Luckily….. i quickly stated that it was a joke. I must have used the words Sandy Fangirls about twenty times. That makes us all sound really cool. I’m 27 by the way. Ahem. *Note for future, do not ever say to actors that you were disappointed to see their fellow cast mate and friend. They won’t get the joke because they have no clue you actually like the bloke.* 

Anyway, Jon went back in….. Lucy met her friend and we all departed. I then got severe travel delays. I’m talking five hours. But the day was worth it. 

And as I will never ask Sandy for a picture, this will have to do. ( I would ask him guys, but he told me that the restraining order doesn’t allow me to ever be in touching distance. Damn it.) ((Not really. I shouldn’t even be within the same twenty miles as him or something.)) (((Seriously, I’m joking. But who knows what the future holds. Ha.))) 

Image

Yes. That is me doing a kissy face with a Sandy Valli poster. But i’m not the only one. The lovely old lady in front blew him a kiss when he was on stage. You can be a fangirl at any age. Just remember that. 

Advertisements

Published by

The_Written_Laura

Inventing the world that's passing by.

Please leave a comment and I'll get back to you!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s