5 reasons why On Your Feet! is the show to see this summer
| By Nicholas Ephram Ryan Daniels
It's a great time to be a jukebox musical in the West End. Just look at the smash-hit Tina Turner Musical and Girl From the North Country (which was so popular that it's now set to return to the West End next year). Now we have the newly premiered London Palladium production of On Your Feet!, the fabulous bio-musical about Gloria Estefan that has truly brought its A-game to dazzle and impress its audiences.
Find out what the critics have been saying about On Your Feet! and read our list for the top five reasons why you should see it this summer.
1. It will literally lift you off your derrieres and get you on your feet! The first act is brought to an end with Gloria Estefan's biggest hit of her career, "Conga". In a bid to make things more thrilling and to end the first half in style, a conga line will form and dance its way into the audience with those in attendance welcome to join in on the fun. While Nick Levine of Time Out called this moment a "gimmicky decision" on part of the producers and that an audience member's participation "might depend on how many on-brand Cubra Libre cocktails you've had at the Coliseum's bar," most audiences have praised the show's interactive moment and it remains a staple for the production. It's also way more exciting to conga your way to the bar during intermission than it is to just walk there, don't you think?
2. Christie Prades does a glorious job of portraying Gloria Estefan. The verdict is in and UK critics adore Christie Prades. The American actress started as a replacement in the original 2015 Broadway production and was swiftly cast to headline the US tour of the show before continuing in her role for the UK tour and London residency. Tim Bano of The Stage praised Prade's "wonderful voice" and the "palpable chemistry" between her and her co-star George Ioannides as Emilio while Alun Hood of WhatsOnStage was impressed with Prade's "unique combination of vulnerability, heart and steel" despite neither looking or sounding like the real Gloria Estefan. The vocally impressive performance of Christie Prades certainly carries the show and is worth hearing with your own two ears.
3. There is no antagonist. In her review for London Theatre Direct, Shanine Salmon said it was "refreshing" not to see a living, breathing arch-nemesis. In fact, the closest thing that this musical comes to having an antagonist is the unfortunate car crash that left our Havana-born heroine hospitalised and with a fractured spine. Forced to have metal rods inserted into her back and undergo intensive therapy, it's Gloria Estefan's long road to recovery that serves as the show's biggest conflict.
4. The costumes and dance moves are fabulous. On Your Feet! endeavours to stay true to the eras in which the story unfolds and audiences are in for a treat. In her review of On Your Feet! for LTD, Sandra Howell praised the costumes' authenticity, calling them "fun" and "in keeping with the decades, countries, and neighbourhoods where Gloria and Emilio Estefan lived and worked." And while the stage design itself may be a bit on the minimal side, the choreography more than makes up for it and features some of the best Latin dances from the Caribbean, including Cuban salsa and Dominican bachata. Sit back, relax, and get a load of this!
5. The music really is the star of the show. On Your Feet! is a musical, after all, and it certainly "does what it says on the tin" (Sandra Howell, London Theatre Direct). But in addition to Prades' exquisite singing voice, and of course the lovely medley of Estefan's greatest hits, many have also been captivated by the show's live band. The musical's upbeat numbers will certainly have you feeling like you're on holiday in Cuba in no time.
Save up to £61 with On Your Feet! flash sale discounted tickets available now!
There's no better time than now to book your tickets for this vivacious summer musical. As part of London Theatre Direct's 20th-birthday celebrations, we are offering hot discounted theatre tickets on some of the best West End shows.
Save up to £61 on tickets for On Your Feet! when you book by 23 July 2019! This 24-hour flash sale for On Your Feet! is valid for all Tuesday-Friday performances until 19 August 2019. Be sure to book today to get your hands on cheap tickets at just £20, £30, and £40!
🎟 Book your On Your Feet! London Palladium tickets here by 23 July and save up to £61.