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Play with music, book by Neil Simon, music by Marvin Hamlisch, lyrics by Don Black. Directed by Rob Bettinson.
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The girl in question is an attractive 33 year-old ex-Broadway dancer with a succession of failed relationships behind her, mainly because she is fatally attracted to actors who are not exactly known for their stability! As the latest departee leaves her to pursue a movie career in Italy, shw vows that relationships with the acting fraternity are no longer for her! That is until due to unforseen (and exceptionally funny) circumstances she has to share her (two bedroomed) apartment with yet another aspiring thespian.
A ten year-old daughter with various schoolmates, a less than accomodating landlady, motley members of a dance class, an off-off-off-Broadway producer and a performance (at least, in part!) of 'Richard III', the likes of which Shakespeare himself wouldn't recognise - all combine with 'The Goodbye Girl' and her reluctant lodger to make this both a funny and yet also most touching of musical plays.
Starring Gary Wilmot and Ann Crumb, with Shezwae Powell.
This production has been drastically rewritten from the production recently seen on Broadway, this production is also being produced in a smaller theatre than on Broadway.
ALBERY Theatre, Previewed 14 April, Opened 17 April 1997, Closed 28 June 1997
Extracts from the reviews:
'There may be more than a few volleys of Neil Simon's familiar cynicism and wisecracking, but his comedy-musical is always within calling distance of sentimentality. You spot the happy ending two and half hours before it arrives...While the musical does not dazzle with pathos and songs, there is always the scenery to divert you - the distraction of wondering just how may hundreds of thousands of pounds it cost to mount. The band is whisked around on a huge hydraulic bridge which rises and falls. Roof-tops, skyscrapers, facades of buildings, an aerobics studio and an open-plan New York apartment are smoothly hauled before and above us...Shezwae Powell in terrific gospel voice as the landlady...Gary Wilmot sings strong and clear as Elliot...[the production] climaxes with an old-fashioned roof-top finale involving champagne and a chorus of dancing girls and chaps in dinner jackets' Star rating: Poor. London Evening Standard
'Nicely done, but must they make such a song and dance about it?...The songs are likeable and hum-along-to. Robert Jones's sets are impressive. And there ar sterling supporting performances, not least from Shezwae Powell...Somehow, though, there seems to be such a lot of this show...a sentimental, borderline corny song-and-dance spectacular with plenty of broad comedy. Everybody knocks themselves out to give the audience a good time, and Wilmot's fans will not be disappointed. On that level, Goodbye Girl is good enough. Cut by 20 minutes and given a touch of sophistication, it might be even better' Daily Mail
'The show will doubtless entertain those prepared to switch off their native cynicism and succumb to [Neil] Simon's quip-laden whimsy and Marvin Hamlisch's likeable if unmemorable tunes...It is very Broadway. It is very Neil Simon' The Times
'[Gary] Wilmot is charming and funny...The show-stopper is a sizzlingly comic red-hot momma number from Shezwae Powell..."This show's gonna run for a hundred years," sings Elliot [played by Gary Wilmot]: I fancy that the life expectancy of The Goodbye Girl will be considerably shorter' The Independent