Briskly paced, Together Again manages to get through ten songs in fifty minutes, which is quite an achievement, given that there’s also introductions and conversations thrown in too. Sophie Isaacs, Jodie Steele and T’Shan Williams were in the same West End production of Heathers: The Musical, in the roles of Heather McNamara, Heather Chandler and Heather Duke respectively. Drawing from both musical theatre and chart music worlds, the trio present a concert with an impressive range of showtunes and melodies that, collectively, are as poignant as they are motivational.
Some sprightly choreography sprinkles proceedings, though the ladies aren’t exactly in the largest of studio spaces, so there isn’t room for full-blown dance routines. But it’s all so relaxed, friendly and welcoming – one genuinely feels like an invited guest to a highly intimate gig. They are just as good singing solo as they are harmonising together, and there is a crystal clear delivery in every song (even one where they are deliberately doing what in jazz is known as ‘scat singing’, because they never committed the actual lyrics to memory).
Anecdotes and background stories introduce each song sufficiently. Weepy stories are for another concert at another time – here, Williams chooses a Janet Jackson number because it’s one of the first songs she bought when her mother brought her to a branch of HMV years ago, while Isaacs plumped for ‘I See Stars’ from the musical Mean Girls, because it’s “uplifting and beautiful”. All this is fair enough – reasons for choosing to sing something need not be deep and philosophical.
None of the songs were obscure – perhaps only ‘When I Look At You’ from The Scarlet Pimpernel, a Frank Wildhorn musical that has never had a West End run (it was nominated for Best Musical at the 1998 Tony Awards) may not be altogether familiar to the online audience. The show struck the right balance between raising people’s spirits and not being overly saccharine. The living room ambience of the concert was delightful and could not have been more appropriate for a production filmed to be seen from the comfort of one’s own home.
The smiles on the trio throughout were palpable. Truth be told, I enjoyed watching their show about as much as they evidently loved doing it. There were some interesting insights into how they found themselves in the musical theatre business, and the light-hearted banter between them was a pleasure to listen to. Full marks for a perfectly executed concert, delivered with enthusiasm and charm.
Review by Chris Omaweng
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