GIRLS!!! We are massively missing a trick here. I went to review the latest production at Richmond Theatre on Tuesday evening “Tom Jones, The Musical” starring Kit Orton with my mother…it was her birthday and it seemed like a good idea. I wasn’t convinced that I would love it and I managed to bring down the average age by twenty five years…the whole theatre was packed full of lively septuagenarians, so my mother was in good company – but honestly, Mr Orton was a sight to behold…very easy on the eye and sexy, so I would suggest a few group outings that I am going to be in charge of.
The story starts back in the 1950’s in South Wales in the town of Pontypridd, where we witness the difficulties of the community and Tom’s family life. The son of a minor who became a global superstar was always going to be a good story, but there was lots I didn’t know. I didn’t know he got tuberculosis when he was 12 and I hadn’t realised Linda got pregnant so very young at just 16 and they decided to get married. Linda, played by Elin Phillips portrayed the incredibly supportive wife who believed in him 100% and as we all know was a massive support for Tom during his whole musical career – she very sadly died a few weeks ago and even with all the rumours abounding about his bad boy behaviour, they were together till the end, making this love story even more poignant and relevant in this day and age of quick fixes and brief marriages.
Kit Orton brings out the best of what it would have been like to see Tom Jones back in the day and by the time he was singing “Misery” and “Lucille” he’d got me – those hip movements were mind-blowing. My only recommendation moving forward is that the wigs are improved a little. The cast are all multi-talented actors, singers and musicians who all ably support the star.
“With These Hands” was excellent and by then I was wishing I had brought a spare pair of underpants to throw at him and was sitting in the front row, rather than sitting with my mother. The build-up to Tom getting his first Number one with “It’s Not Unusual” and performing on Top of The Pops was a revelation – I wonder what happened to his band, The Senators when by then he had gone solo.
Towards the end of the second half, my mother, not someone who gets out much, was dancing in her seat along with the whole entire audience and gave it “10 1/2 out of 10”. She loved every minute. In fact she even cried during some of the songs and I have to admit to having a tear in my eye myself during a few of the songs – “Green Green Grass of Home” especially.
SO. I think it’s time we got the younger audience out to watch it. They’d love it. He even sings “Sex Bomb” and by then I too was loving every minute. Just a great night out watching an incredibly talented, snake-hipped, rather beautiful singer and actor who is very well placed in the role.
Go and see it – you will feel massively uplifted…even if you have to go home with no pants on (I’ll come with you).