Home » London Theatre Reviews » The Best of Wham! at The Churchill Theatre | Review

The Best of Wham! at The Churchill Theatre | Review

The Best of Wham!In the history of the world, four years is not that long a period. In the history of pop music, the four years between 1982 and 1986 mark the rise of a musical supergroup who are as popular today as they were back in the day. They sold more than 28 million records, topping the charts with three albums, four number one singles and eleven top ten hits. The group was, of course, Wham, and thanks to Sweeney Entertainments, you can relive their glory days once more as The Best of Wham! tour travels around the country. I was lucky enough to catch the show during a stopover at the Churchill Theatre Bromley.

The show is a combination tribute and homage to the music of George, Andrew, Pepsi and Shirlie and really captures the spirit of the original in a classic and enjoyable style. Everything from the costumes, the hair, the choreography is vintage Wham and everything about the evening takes the audience back to the giddy days of the early 1980’s.

Musically, it is all there. From ‘Young Guns’ to ‘Club Tropicana’, from ‘Wake me up Before you Go-Go ‘ to ‘Wham Rap! (Enjoy What You Do)’. There is the full panoply of Wham hits to sing and dance along to – and the audience certainly did that. Vocally, the performers are all very strong and can both belt out a tune and bring it down for the more emotional slower numbers. The four singers were backed up by a lively and talented live band, with a wonderful saxophonist whose introduction to ‘Careless Whisper’ nearly brought a tear to the eye. The highlight of the night for me? Strangely, not a Wham song but a fabulous reminder of the amazing version of ‘Somebody to Love’ that George performed at The Freddie Mercury Tribute Concert on 20th April 1992 at Wembley Stadium. This really was the stand out performance of an amazing night. The only thing missing was a bit of history of the band, which would have been nice and I have to say the interchange between the performers at the end of the first half didn’t really work as well as the writers intended.

However, that is a minor point and, coming in at around two hours, The Best of Wham! really delivered everything it promised and gave its audience of Wham fans – both old and young – a really great evening’s run down memory lane. My only criticism about the evening was to do with Sweeney Entertainments merchandising. For once, at these things, the tee shirts – with the iconic ‘Choose Life’ design were a fair price and I would have loved to have one but the company had only got two sizes on sale and you had to pay with cash – which in this day and age seems very strange. This was a bit disappointing, but luckily the show started soon after and I forgot the petty annoyance of not being able to wear a Wham Tee shirt while I was singing and dancing along.

Unless there are some major discoveries in the medical world, we will never get a chance to see Wham perform again – which is a real shame. But, whether you, like me and my companion Helen, were around at the time and are looking for a way to recapture the spirit of the era, or you are a newbie to the whole Wham legend then The Best of Wham! is the closest thing to the original that you will ever get to see and, believe me, you will be kicking yourself if you miss it when it comes to your town.

4 stars

Review by Terry Eastham

A ‘Fantastic’ new show featuring the best of George, Andrew, Pepsi and Shirlie with sensational vocals, choreography, costumes and an awesome live band.

Can it really be 37 years since George Michael and Andrew Ridgeley formed one of the most enduring pop groups of the 80s? In four short years WHAM! sold more than 28 million records, topping the charts with three albums, four number one singles and eleven top ten hits.

They featured in the Live Aid concert of 1985 and were the first western pop group to ever tour in China. Their impact and influence on the 80s era and music today really cannot be over emphasised. The Best of WHAM! Show includes all those hits, a few B side favourites and a couple of early George Michael bonus songs.

This fun-loving, vibrant, megamix tribute to the pop sensation of the 80’s will be loved by ‘Young Guns’ of all ages, so come along to the ‘Club Tropicana’ (*Sorry. Drinks not free.)

For tour details


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