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Oliver! Is the latest production to be performed by EOMS (Eastleigh Operatic Musical Society), at The Point in Eastleigh, and was certainly a bit hit with the audience. This well-known story with hit songs was certainly an excellently staged production and the whole cast and crew should be congratulated on their efforts.

Scenery was designed with practicality in mind, ensuring quick scene changes were slick and seamless. The simple set transformed from the workhouse, to the funeral parlour, the streets of London, to the pub… a very versatile set which was used to its full potential.

Sound and lighting added to the overall show, and the very few microphone issues were rectified quickly.

Rob Jones, musical director, and his band of 10 musicians were a joy to listen to, and hard clearly worked hard on reaching perfection. Jones also worked hard directing the vocals of the show, which were evident in the whole cast numbers as singing was loud and clear.

Up and coming star of the future Jack Fenner played the title role Oliver, with a superb little singing voice and clear diction, what was not to love about his performance! Fagin was played to perfection by Keith Wiggans who added his own stance on this well-known character. His impeccable timing during ‘Pick and Pocket’ was a highlight.

Tom Joyce gave a crisp performance playing Mr Bumble, with precise diction. Algonisde Joyce, was Widow Corney played by the talented character actor Jacqui Beckingham, who together gave a comedy performance during ‘I Shall Scream’!

Leading lady, Rachael Beckingham played the role of Nancy. Her brilliant singing voice made the audience fall silent during ‘As Long as He Needs Me’, and her confidence in the lively group numbers certainly shone through.

Special mention must go to the children of the company who worked hard to remember the dance routines! They were just brilliant and a joy to watch.

One character who stole the show was Bullseye, Bill Sikes’ faithful dog, who in this production was played by real life Bulldog, Elliott Johnson. The audience gave an ‘aaaahhh’ when he first appeared on stage and was lapping up the attention in the foyer after the show from the audience!

Oliver! continues at The Point until Saturday 24th November with evening shows at 7.30pm and a Saturday matinee at 2.30pm.  Huge congratulations to all involved, it was a thoroughly enjoyable evening and a must see local production!