Last night I went to the Allendale Centre to see Wimborne Musical Theatre perform An Injection of Happiness, quite a bold claim to make in the title of a show! Suzi De Villiers and Duncan Trew certainly had a stroke of brilliance with this, the song choices were a lovely, eclectic mix and the talent was brilliant. Most importantly, I’d be surprised if any of the audience hadn’t felt they were injected with a little bit more happiness.
Before going onto outline the strengths of the show, of which there were many, it’s important to outline some of the more practical points first. The opening of the show was marred somewhat by the audience picking up some of the conversations that were happening backstage just before the show started. There were also points where some of the performers did not shine as brightly as they could have done due to the audience’s inability to hear them, I think this was a mix of mic issues and the music being too loud to hear some of the ensemble. This was mostly fixed by the middle of Act 1.
Moving onto the positive comments then, the joy and enjoyment that was seen on that stage from all performers was infectious. There were beaming smiles from everyone, and they all genuinely looked like they were having the best time. The audience responded well to this and it was clear that they were having a great time too.
The chorus numbers were slick with simple, but very effective, choreography which was clearly designed to make performers of all dance abilities look good, and they did! I particularly enjoyed the cowboy section, ‘Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious’, ‘Colour My World’ and ‘Oom-Pah Pah’.
Selina Rumbold shined in every song she featured in, and she had some great songs to sing. ‘A Whole New World’, duetted with Duncan Sayers, was particularly strong on the vocal side. She blew the audience away with her rendition of ‘Don’t Rain On My Parade’, a very difficult song to sing and she was note perfect. Duncan Sayers also had some great moments, especially in ‘Sweet Caroline’, he has clearly got great vocal talent.
Phil Evans was particularly funny in ‘The Vicar And I Will Be There’, and he treated the audience to some very witty and very amusing monologues in Act 1 & Act 2, both of which were well received.
Lee Neal and John Bounds made a great pairing in ‘Well Did You Evah’, and Mikaela Buckby showed us some outstanding vocals in her version of ‘Walking On Sunshine’.
Jemma Cable & Vanessa Wassell both had some great moments, and showed great enthusiasm in every song, whether leading or ensemble. They were definitely stand out performers. I also have to mention Pam Mizon who had some cracking songs, especially ‘My Favourite Things’, which will unexpectedly be etched into my brain for many months to come.
Overall, an excellent show, and everyone on the stage should be proud of what they have created. Thank you for having me.