Oh What a Lovely War at Derby Theatre delivered chaos and epic tunes

Oh What A Lovely War is a thought-provoking drama that will grip you and take you on an thrilling two-hours’ long journey Photo Ria GheiOh What A Lovely War is a thought-provoking drama that will grip you and take you on an thrilling two-hours’ long journey Photo Ria Ghei
Oh What A Lovely War is a thought-provoking drama that will grip you and take you on an thrilling two-hours’ long journey Photo Ria Ghei
Cast of six bring energy and fun to Derby on a cold weekday night

The sun may be blazing in Derby but it feels bitterly cold, making the theatre an ideal spot to hunker down and forget about the rubbish weather.

Luckily for me, Tuesday (April 16) just happened to be opening night of Oh What A Lovely War.

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Billed to be a foundation of theatre and based on the 1963 Joan Littlewood musical, Oh What A Lovely War is based on a music hall song of the same name.

The satirical show is an ironic critique of the harsh reality of the war.

It follows a dance troupe of six who play numerous political figures including Allies, presidents and prime ministers from the war effort.

Despite the singing, dancing and fabulous fun, the show juxtaposes pro-war songs against a black backdrop where fatality numbers are projected.

What I thought about Oh What A Lovely War

I am an old soul and really enjoyed music from that era.

I especially liked the song performances by Chioma Uma and Alice E Mayer.

The stellar cast that includes Christopher Arkeston, Euan Wilson and Tom Crabtree sure provide a boatload of laughs with their high octane performances.

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Harry Curley gives a star turn as a general inspecting his troops, and that scene raised one of the biggest laughs on the night.

I was not entirely familiar with all the characters portrayed on stage, so there were some parts of the play where I did not quite understand what was happening.

Read more: What's On in Derby?

However the music and fabulous performances took me on a rollercoaster, grabbing my attention and never letting go from start to finish.

The show highlights the tragedy of the First World War, and the millions of lives lost 110 years’ ago.

Fast forward to the 21st century, I could not help but think of precarious situations that continue to unfold across the world today.

So for this reason, I think Derby Theatre’s showing of Oh What A Lovely War is prescient and a must-watch.

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Oh What A Lovely War is a Blackeyed Theatre production in association with South Hill Park Arts Centre.

It is showing from Tuesday April 16, till Saturday April 20, 2024.

Address: Derby Theatre, 15 Theatre Walk, Derby DE1 2NF

For more information about the play visit the theatre website by clicking here.

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