Movie music show scores
with the fans
The Movies! attracted capacity audiences last weekend at the
Alban Arena, St Albans. Sunday evening was one of buzz and excitement
as proud families watched their offspring sing in the 70-strong Hertfordshire
Youth Show Choir, directed by Amanda Hall. Dressed in striking
red and black, they complemented the variety of outfits worn by the
eight adult singers, arrayed beneath a sparkling backdrop, coloured
lighting adding to the brilliance and razzmatazz of a showbiz occasion.
company, many of whom are from Hertfordshire, comprised eight attractive
performers – Bobbie Chatt, Matthew Gregory, Fenella Lee, Julie
Lilley, Jeff Nicholson, Jeremy Pelzer, Charlotte Rhodes-Chamberlin
and Richard Sellek, all professionally trained and with a wealth of
The six-piece Showstoppers!
band, directed by Ben Sherwood, performed with style and panache.
Act One was a nostalgic journey through 27 songs from hit movies spanning
the past 50 to 60 years. Some of the songs were new to me, but many
brought back memories of the James Bond movies and Hollywood blockbuster
company are a slick and talented group with powerful and tuneful voices,
backed by a large choir and the show gave a great deal of pleasure
to the majority of the audience who showed their appreciation in the
time-honoured tradition of clapping, stamping their feet and on one
occasion, the throwing of some delicate underwear…
For Act Two, the choir had
changed their clothing into white T shirts displaying musical symbols
and, again this black and white colour scheme was reflected in the
dress code of the grown ups. Popular numbers included old favourites
such as White Christmas, Lullaby of Broadway, Ol’ Man River,
and a Judy Garland medley as well as Singin in the Rain and My Heart
Will Go On from Titanic. Particularly reminiscent of the greatest
romance of them all – Casablanca – was As Time Goes By.
Happily the choir was used
more than in the first half, particularly with their marvellous rendition
of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Supercalifragilistic from Mary Poppins.
These well-disciplined and co-ordinated youngsters are a credit to
Amanda Hall and Bobbie Chatt as they sang and moved with verve and
The company and choir closed
the first half of the programme with a spirited and amusing medley
from The Blues Brothers, the choir producing and wearing, in unison,
dark glasses. Beauty and the Beast brought the show to a grand finale
amid excited and prolonged applause that merited an encore.
This high-quality, fast
moving show, devised by Bobbie Chatt, was an exciting, enthusiastic
showcase for local talent, providing a fun night out as well as raising
funds for its chosen charity, Breast Cancer Awareness.
The Watford Observer
Performers are needed to
make a new musical about the silver screen a hit - Search for Showstoppers!
The search is on for talented young singers to take part in
the next big show by Brilliant Productions.
The company is looking for youngsters aged between ten and
18 to form a 60-strong choir to appear at the Alban Arena
in October in a showcase of songs from films.
Showstoppers! - The Movies! is a staged concert of
well-loved numbers from big-screen hits through the ages.
It will be performed by a company of West End and local stars.
A previous production of Showstoppers! featuring
songs from musicals was a hit with Hertfordshire audiences
three years ago.
Watford-based actress and producer Bobbie
Chatt, who set up the company, said: ‘We have hit upon a formula which
really works – uniting talented professional
and amateur performers from both London and
our own county to produce a show of the highest
We had a wonderful school choir last time
we performed at the Alban Arena but this
time we decided to give all youngsters the
opportunity to take part – which is
why we are holding auditions.
The last show staged by Brilliant Productions and
the Hertfordshire Youth Music Theatre was
Fame! which sold out the James Theatre at
Watford Boy’s Grammar
Auditions for the Hertfordshire Youth Show Choir will
take place on SUNDAY 29TH JUNE between 10.30am and 7.30pm
at Moonglow Studios in Estcourt Road, Watford. All
auditionees must register and will be given a one-hour timeslot
upon application for audition.
Anyone wishing to audition and wanting more information should
contact Bobbie Chatt by emailing Brilliant
Productions or phoning 07977 270788.
Youths to sing film soundtracks
Young singers are enjoying a slice of movie magic after making
it through auditions for the Hertfordshire Youth Show
Seventy schoolchildren were chosen to sing in the new group,
which is now in rehearsals for its first public performance
in a show devoted to favourite songs from the silver screen.
Local star Bobbie Chatt, who came up with
the idea, said the choir was a great introduction
to showbusiness. She said: “Children
are becoming more and more confident with
their singing nowadays thanks to television
programmes such as Pop Idol, which is great.
However they need to learn how to use their
voices properly and listen and work with
each other to create a beautiful sound.”
The choir director responsible for creating this sound is
West End performer and vocal coach Amanda Goldthorpe-Hall.
Amanda has taken main roles in musicals suc as Phantom
of the Opera, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, The Secret
Garden and Evita. She said: “To maintain
a long career in the performing arts you need to know how
to sing properly, to take harmony lines confidently and to
practice really hard. A choir such as this is a perfect grounding,
and what’s more the performers get
to sing music they know and enjoy.”
The Hertfordshire Youth Show Choir will play a key
part in Showstoppers – The Movies! at the
Alban Arena on Saturday October 4 and Sunday October 5. Staged
by Brilliant Productions the show
will include songs from movie blockbusters
through the ages, sung by a mix of West End
performers - including Bobbie and Amanda – and
The choir, who are all aged between nine and 18, will cover
material from films such as Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Grease
and the Blues Brothers, and others by the legendary Judy
Garland. Music from several Disney films will also be included.
Bobbie said: “After only a few rehearsals
the youngsters sounded fantastic. There was
so much individual talent at the auditions,
and we wished we could have taken more. To
hear them all together is an amazing experience.”
The Watford Observe
The stage is set for a Studham youngster making her professional
debuts alongside West End performers next weekend.
Madison Hughes, 15, is starring in Showstoppers – The
Movies! at the Alban Arena, St Albans, on Saturday
October 4 and Sunday 5.
After a rigorous audition process she beat 150 others to become
a member of the Hertfordshire Youth Show Choir and
is looking forward to wowing audiences with her renditions
of film favourites throughout the ages. No strangers to performing,
Madison has studied singing, dancing and acting for a number
of years, taking part in many local and school shows. This
is her first experience with the Hertfordshire Youth
Show Choir and she is extremely excited.
Madison said: “As the opening night draws closer we
are all working really hard. There is a lot of music to learn,
everything from Disney to the Blues Brothers – but
it’s worth it. I think the audiences
are going to be amazed actually so hopefully
we will sell out!”
This is a definite possibility
– ticket sales are going at an impressive
rate and Brilliant
Productions’ last two shows
saw queues for returns. Artistic Director
of the company, and West End performer
Bobbie Chatt said: “Whereas many concerts
touring now rely on solo number after solo
number, we have a great many company pieces.
Imagine Circle of Life from The Lion King
sung in eight-part harmony by over 70 voices.
We want to lift the roof off the theatre!”
Madison and the rest of the Hertfordshire Youth Show Choir will
be joined onstage by nine principal singers, including Bobbie,
who toured with the hit musical Les Miserables, as
adult Eponine and Cosette, and Amanda Hall, from Phantom
of the Opera, Beauty and the Beast and Evita.
Luton Herald and Post
Favourites of the Silver Screen
A host of Watford performers are set
to take a trip Over the Rainbow, down Moon River and via Hushabye
Mountain this weekend when they star in a concert of hit songs from
the silver screen. Showstoppers – The Movies! features
young singers from across the region, who will appear alongside professionals
in this tribute to movie music staged by Watford theatre company Brilliant
Productions at the Alban Arena. Among the experienced principals
taking part are Watford favourites Richard Sellek, brother and sister
team Julie and Jeff Nicholson, together with musical director Ben