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Packemin Productions: Kinky Boots - Review by Daniel Conway


In 2005, I first saw the film Kinky Boots and needless to say it was pretty formative. When I first saw the stage show version, I fell in love with the music. All this is to say that productions of this show have a lot to live up to. So when I say that this production was impressive and enjoyable, I mean it. In Packemin Productions and Riverside Theatres run of Kinky Boots every detail is considered, the performers are electric and they earned the standing ovation they received on opening night.





Director Jessica Fallico and her team have done a brilliant job at making everything from the set to the costumes, from the dancing to the singing sparkle. Rhinestone sparkles even. The first thing you notice is the set. The wooden and metal aesthetic captures the mood and the context of the story perfectly. The scaffolding and the set pieces were used effectively to create depth and the transitions were seamless. Having done my fair share of stage crew work, I notice this aspect that is often overlooked when done so well, because that is the point I guess, Linus Karsai and his team should be commended for making all the moving parts work. Wigs off to Audrey Currie and Karen Lamon-Barnett for their work on costuming, make-up and wigs. Every single drag outfit is a moment. My personal favourite was the gown worn by Lola during the eleven o’clock number.



The musical director Peter Hayward and choreographer Cameron Boxall have done an amazing job with guiding the cast to producing fantastic moments on stage. The ensemble sounds great. The harmonies resonate so well and frame the lead performances. Hayward has created a sound that is hard not to get immersed by. Boxall’s work shines the most with the Angels. These padded, cinched, heeled dynamos inject every scene they are in with energy. They command the stage.





The Dynamic duo of Adam Rennie and Nat Jobe are captivating as the hapless heir to a failing shoe factory and the grand dame of the moment respectively. Rennies’ Charlie is engaging and earnest. I truly believe him as a man just trying to do his best and do the best for the people he loves. Rennie’s voice is so strong and his rendition of “The Soul of a Man” is one of the best I have ever heard. Jobe as Lola is a star. His section of “I’m Not My Father’s Son” was so emotionally charged it drove many people in the audience to tears. The comedic timing, the vulnerability and facial expressions alone warrant a whole paragraph, but I can't do him justice. He is a star. Go and see him. Tell me I am wrong.








All of the performers were fantastic. However, I feel like I would be remiss for not highlighting a couple of performances. Laura Garrick as Lauren whose rendition of “The History of Wrong Guys” had me laughing so hard. Every beat, every expression was pure joy.





David Tucker as George was so charming on stage, he made me laugh and had a warmth that really added to every scene he was featured in.








In a nearly faultless show I do feel it needs to be noted that the sound mixing in the first few numbers was not doing the performers justice. This was particularly noticeable with “The Land of Lola” which is disappointing because everything on stage was so impressive. Opening nights are never without hiccups and I really do hope this is fixed as the run continues.


Kinky Boots is good fun. It has heart and this production is bursting with talent. Do yourself a favour and book a ticket.


4.5 tickets to Milan out of 5.

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