Standing at the Sky’s Edge- Theater Review

Just a mile or so down the banks of the Thames from Shakespeare’s Globe theater is the modular National Theater. The 1127 seats of its Oliver stage were filled last night for the performance of Standing at the Sky’s Edge. And it is no surprise. The performance was outstanging.

I knew it was a production full of music but did not anticipate the number and sheer quality of fantastic voices. There are solos, there are duets, and there are full troupe choruses to remarkable ends. The orchestra/band is elevated, making for an excellent view from our balcony seats. And the performers were adept at switching up the genre from melodic to rock and role with an electric guitar solo.

Here’s a bit from the Guardian:

But it blooms into a glorious love letter indeed, revealing a big, booming heart and astonishing sound. Hawley’s music and lyrics stand front and centre of the production, characters often making first entrances through song and occasionally breaking out of a scene to perform a number, microphone in hand, as if at a gig.

The cast is uniformly strong and their singing outstanding. Faith Omole’s voice has the deep, rich timbre of Amy Winehouse’s while Maimuna Memon’s songs blast with emotion. Ensemble numbers bring shivers. Feet tap, spines tingle. We find ourselves swaying in our seats. Together with its lovely movement, the show becomes unstoppably winning, ineffably exuberant.

Step out of the theater and take in this wonderful view from the South Bank over to the lit dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral.

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