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Nov 15th, 2019
Disney and Cameron Mackintosh have brought magic back to the West End in this brand new production of Mary Poppins. Based on the original stories by P.L. Travers, Mary Poppins follows the Banks family, whose employment of a rather magical governess teaches them more than they could have ever imagined.
Although it's full of the songs that we all know and love, Mary Poppins also features a selection of brand new tunes from writing duo George Stiles and Anthony Drewe. The new tracks never quite stand up to the brilliance of the originals (how could they!), still, Stiles and Drewe's new arrangements breathe a breath of fresh air into the classics. Coupled with breath-taking choreography by the award-winning Matthew Bourne and Stephen Mear this production allows its incredible cast's talent to shine.
If Disney ever decides to make a "Mary Poppins Returns...Again", I would suggest ditching the celebs and getting Zizi Strallen (who stars as our titular nanny in this West End production) on the job. Her quintessentially British accent, stellar vocals, and embodiment of character (right down to the position of her feet) makes you question whether this musical was reincarnated just for her. Strallen is practically perfect in every way!
Strallen's Poppins is perfectly matched to Charlie Stemp's adorable Bert. Playing the cheeky and chirpy man of all trades' Stemp reminds us of his star talent as he dances, sings and chim chim cheree's around the stage. A young star who has the brightest future ahead of him, I challenge any Mary Poppins attendee to not fall in love with Charlie and his bucket load of charm.
Joseph Millson as Mr. Banks and Amy Griffiths as Winifred Banks make a fine supporting cast alongside Claire Machin (Mrs. Brill) and Jack North as (Robertson) who provide some joyous comic moments.
Without giving too much away Bob Crowley's impeccable scenic design needs to be seen to be believed. You may think how a stage show could possibly emulate the pure magic of the original film but let me tell you that it does... and then some! It is a feat of technical wizardry which could only be matched by Mary Poppins' neighbour, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, and will leave you wide-eyed in wonder, much like a child at Christmastime.
To put it simply, this 2019 return of Mary Poppins is a hit of glorious nostalgia and pure magic, leaving you with a joyful heart and a lightness of step. Whether you're a Mary Poppins fan or simply just want a couple of hours of entertainment then I urge you to go on a jolly holiday with Mary!
View our show pages for more information about Mary Poppins, Prince Edward Theatre.
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