Audiences were treated to a sensational performance from Curtain Call Creative at Medina Theatre this weekend. Made in Dagenham, the musical based on the 2010 film that tells the true story of the 1968 sewing-machinists strike at the Ford factory in Dagenham, Essex, was Curtain Call Creative’s first production of 2022. This show certainly packs a punch with a strong feminist message, catchy tunes and electrifying performances from its talented cast. This was young musical theatre on the Island at its best!
Led by a strong creative team: Jack Tutt in the director’s chair, Andrew Woodford heading up the live orchestra and Suzie Morris setting the dance moves, Made in Dagenham is a toe-tapping feel good show and a great showcase for this performing arts group.
The real strength in this performance was the ensemble with their slick choreography and phenomenal vocals. This is a cast that cares about the story, loves working together and can put on a great show.
Ellie Warne led the Dagenham girls as Rita O’Grady, the machinist-turned-campaigner, and blew us away with her stunning voice in her final call-to-action, ‘Stand Up!’. Josh Rolling played Rita’s forgetful but eventually supportive husband, Eddie, in a mature and sensitive performance. Asha Robins had the audience laughing with her hilarious take on Beryl, the bawdy factory worker who wants all the gossip on her colleagues’ love lives, and Katy Haggerty brought pathos and power to the piece as the seasoned Union Convenor, Connie.
For me, the use of adult actors in some of the roles jarred a little with the rest of the show. Roger Hooper as Harold Wilson and Amanda Barnley as Barbara Castle both gave strong performances, but, with so much incredible young talent on the stage, I felt it would’ve been nice to see some of those performers have the opportunity to tackle these great parts.
Curtain Call Creative know exactly how to get the very best performances out of this talented bunch of young people. With Alice in Wonderland and Stephen Sondheim’s Into the Woods in the pipeline, you won’t want to miss what this group has in store!
Reviewed by Joe Plumb
More from Curtain Call Creative coming soon!