The words “World War II” and “romance” are almost inseparable from the cliché of a brave soldier and his devoted fiancée, torn apart but ultimately reunited. Happily for those of us looking to see something a little different, Miss Nightingale is instead based on the lives of an actress, and two gay men – one of whom has been forced to flee his “Liebe Berlin”. This new musical is fun, cheeky and entertaining, whilst still leaving plenty of room for sincere moments.
Sixteen original songs, ranging from flirtatious, hilarious numbers to touching ballads, are performed by a strong cast of six actor-musicians, and add atmosphere and authenticity to Miss Nightingale. The cast are great at keeping the energy levels of the show high, and the music also really helps in this respect.
The cabaret set-up of the Hippodrome Casino's 180-seat theatre works well with this production. It encourages audience members to immerse themselves in the show and makes it easy for the fourth wall to be unflinchingly broken on many an occasion.
Matthew Floyd Jones (George) and Lauren Chinery (Miss Nightingale / Maggie) are particularly strong, charismatic leads. Impressively, Matthew Bugg not only wrote and directed the show but also now features in it.
It's great to see a World War II romance which breaks away from cliché, strikes a good balance between seriousness and frivolity, and includes really enjoyable music. Miss Nightingale is a fun evening out and is playing at the Hippodrome Casino until 6 May 2018.
You can book your Miss Nightingale tickets here. Please note this show is for over 18s only and valid ID is required for entry.
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