REVIEW: Miss Saigon @ The Palace, Manchester

MISS SAIGON. Ashley Gilmour 'Chris' and Sooha Kim 'Kim'. Photo Johan PerssonThis must surely be the show of the season at the Palace Theatre in Manchester.

The lavish sets and a breathtaking staging matched by pitch perfect performances by a magnificent cast makes for a truly stunning production.

It is not just the iconic helicopter scene in Miss Saigon, when the Americans make their humiliating retreat from the devastated South Vietnam city, that makes this show linger in the memory.

In true Cameron Mackintosh style, there is nothing out of place. Every cast member makes a vital contribution and is on point.

And the dominant themes in the story of power, love and loss are hammered home in every line and every note.

In a retelling of the opera, Madama Butterfly, the musical tells the story of young Kim, a 17-year-old girl who flees her burning village to Saigon where she takes a job in a bar and brothel, ran by the infamous Engineer – a schemer with his eyes set on a new life in the USA.

Kim  meets Chris, a US Marine. They fall in love but their happiness is short-lived, and when Chris returns to America. There follows Kim’s quest to be reunited with her love, who unbeknown to him, fathered her son, Tam.

MISS SAIGON. Red Concepcion 'The Engineer'. Photo Johan Persson (2)Red Concepcion is faultless as the slippery Engineer, with a performance that evokes both revulsion and sympathy. His rendition of The American Dream is real show stopper.

Sooha Kim also excels as Kim with a skillful performance delivering a beautiful interplay with Ashley Gilmour’s Chris, matched by in incredible vocal range.

Runs till May 12

 

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