The history, or shall we say herstory, of the six wives of King Henry VIII come alive in this exciting and dynamic musical at The Vaudeville Theatre. The queens’ remix five hundred years of historical grief, competing for the honour of leading the band, in this newly formed pop group. What follows are heart wrenching, powerful and very witty tales of how they came to be where they eventually ended up; divorced, beheaded, died or as the last one standing.
The evening’s performance saw several of the understudies step up, to the delight of the audience, as they did a superb job in their roles. Collette Guitart, in the role of Catherine of Aragon, got to show off her incredible pipes, while hitting the high C in her solo song ‘No Way’. Additionally, the interactions between her and Bryony Duncan, playing Anne Boleyn, had me laughing out loud as they really nailed the punch lines. Zara Macintosh also stepped up in the role of Katherine Howard, delivering a powerful and passionate solo, and whose story made me feel suitably uncomfortable.
One actor worthy of extra mention is Natalie Paris in the role of Jane Seymour who gave an emotional performance and actually had me feeling sad on her behalf through her song ‘Heart of Stone’.
It was truly entertaining to see the queens’ interacting. The actresses had great chemistry on stage, high and infectious energy throughout the entire show, and not to mention a skilled quartet of musicians on stage backing them up.
Written by Toby Marlow and historian Lucy Moss, who also co-directed the show, it’s delightful to think that the show brings to light new discoveries about the queens that have not previously been explored in other narratives, making their characters more human rather than caricatures told through a male perspective. Furthermore, taking inspiration from modern pop stars such as Beyonce and Britney Spears adds a fun twist to the show which is only rivalled by the fabulous costumes designed by Gabriella Slade.
With its humble beginnings at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2017, this fantastical and modern take on British history has risen to become a worldwide success; and it’s no wonder why. With catchy songs, a swinging band, couture costumes and a great cast, this show will take you back to school and wonder why this show wasn’t part of your curriculum.
Review by Olivia Jannesson
Electrifying musical ‘SIX’ by Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss has truly become a global phenomenon since its early days as a student production in a 100-seat room at Sweet Venue during the 2017 Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
The six wives of Henry VIII take to the mic to tell their tales, remixing five hundred years of historical heartbreak into an 80-minute celebration of 21st-century girl power.
‘SIX’ is co-directed by Lucy Moss and Jamie Armitage, featuring choreography by Carrie-Anne Ingrouille. The design team includes Emma Bailey (Set Design), Gabriella Slade (Costume Design), Tim Deiling (Lighting Design) and Paul Gatehouse (Sound Design). The score features orchestrations by Tom Curran with music supervision and vocal arrangements by Joe Beighton. Casting for ‘SIX’ is by Pearson Casting.
‘SIX’ is produced by Kenny Wax, Wendy & Andy Barnes and George Stiles.
Six the Musical