9 to 5: The Musical is based on the 1980 movie of the same name, with music and lyrics by Dolly Parton. The musical premiered in Los Angeles, prior to playing on Broadway and completing both a US and UK national tour. The plot follows three secretaries who work at ‘Consolidated’ under their smug, sexist and egotistical CEO, Franklin Hart. Deciding that enough is enough, the trio hatch a plan to get their own back and make Consolidated a better place to work.
The three leading ladies are superb. Kerry Butcher (Violet) oozes confidence and command in this particular role. I have seen Kerry perform in a number of shows, and she can clearly take on any character, make it her own and knock ’em dead every time! Imogen Johnson (Judy) is a joy to watch on stage with excellent vocal ability and stage presence. Her rendition of ‘Get out and stay out’ is a particular highlight of the show. Hannah Scanlan (Doralee) is simply a tour de force: a wonderful interpretation of the role with strong vocals, excellent command and a mean country accent thrown in for good measure! The three ladies complement each other perfectly. Elsewhere in the production, Danielle Fletcher (Roz) provides great support with plenty of comedic appearances and her hilarious number, ‘Heart to Hart’, is one not to be forgotten! The entire ensemble provides terrific support to the principals with bucket-loads of energy and enthusiasm in group numbers
With a thirteen-piece band and a cast of over twenty, this production is certainly a challenge. Credit must go to Kevin Jones (director) and Rebecca Bailey (associate director) for pulling together such a high standard of performers. Teddy Clements (musical director) hits all the right notes with his impressive band. I have visited the Plaza on many occasions and sometimes struggled with the clarity of the sound system, but everything tonight was crystal clear, which makes such a difference to the overall production and enjoyment value, so credit to Chris Moses (sound).
The show is billed as ‘A Stickman Production in association with RAODS’. Stickman Productions have a strong reputation and grounding on the local amateur dramatic circuit. Already, I am eager to see their next production. 9 to 5: The Musical runs every night until 21 April at 7.30. You are in for a ‘Dolly’ good time!