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The Bodyguard – the 1992 film starring Whitney Houston and Kevin Costner – has been adapted into a stage musical and is currently touring the UK, with Alexandra Burke playing the central role of Rachel Marron, and Stuart Reid as Frank Farmer, the titular character.  Zoe Birkett plays Rachel in the matinee performances, and it was Zoe (shown above with Reid) who I saw in the production at Wolverhampton Grand Theatre.

The story – trimmed somewhat from the film version – centres on world famous singer Marron, who is being stalked by a crazed fan.  She is reluctantly hires a bodyguard, and Farmer reluctantly takes the job.  Initially they don’t like each other – neither of them wants him there – but as they get to know each other, they start to fall in love.  However, the stalker is an ever present threat, and Frank finds his feelings getting in the way of his job.

The show is packed with musical numbers, most of which are from Whitney Houston’s catalogue of hits, and all of which went down a treat with the audience.  After the initial brief opening scene where a gunshot rings out in the theatre and the stage reveals a man holding a gun while another man is lies injured on the floor, the show really gets going with Rachel Marron performing an energetic, exciting and adrenaline pumping Queen of the Night.  Also wonderful were Melissa James, as Rachel’s sister Nicki, Mike Denman as the stalker, and of course, Stuart Reid as Frank Farmer.

Birkett is adorable as Marron, and wow! what an incredible voice.  She sang all the songs beautifully, ballads and pop numbers alike.  The song for which the show is most known – I will Always Love You – was an absolute triumph, and the actual finale – spoiler alert! – an energetic and truly uplifting version of I Wanna Dance With Somebody – had the whole audience on their feet, clapping along – rarely have I seen an audience enjoy something so completely.  The standing ovation was absolutely deserved and everyone left with a huge smile on their face .

Tickets for this amazing show are understandably going like the proverbial hot cakes, but if you get chance to see it, then go go go – you will be in for a truly wonderful time.

(For more information about this production, please click here.)

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