Anything Goes at Opera House Review

By Manchester's Finest | 9 April 2015

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The brand new production of Cole Porter’s, much loved, multi-award winning musical-comedy, Anything Goes dropped anchor at the Opera House this week to transport theatre lovers into a crazy world of tap dancing sailors and alcohol fuelled high-seas shenanigans.

We follow Billy Crocker (Matt Rawle) as he discovers that the love of his life, sweet debutant Hope Harcourt (Zoe Rainey) is engaged to English aristocrat, Lord Oakley (Stephen Matthews), so he stows away aboard the S.S. American in a bid to win her back. Throw into the mix fellow stowaway, public Enemy Number 13 Moonface Martin (Shaun Williamson); evangelist showgirl Reno Sweeney (Debbie Kurup) lots of laughs, numerous disguises and you’re just about ready to enter the unregulated hedonism of life on the ocean waves.

Jam packed with classic songs, Anything Goes, I Get A Kick Out of You, You’re the Top, Blow, Gabriel, Blow and It’s De-Lovely, you’ll be singing long after the curtain closes. The action in between songs is a little bonkers at times with wheelchair bound women miraculously walking again and beloved pet dogs being thrown overboard but amongst the craziness of it all is a tale of romance with a little hi-jinks thrown in to keep us on our toes.


Rawle and Rainey make for a cute pairing as our star-crossed lovers with the perfect amount of on stage chemistry. Kurup is brassy and bold as Reno Sweeny and belts out the big hits. Stand out moments are the high energy ‘Anything Goes’ which exhausted me just watching it and the sultry spin director Daniel Evans combined with choreographer Alistair David put on ‘Blow, Gabriel, Blow’ is fantastic. Shaun Williamson puts in a great performance as Moonface Martin and it’s refreshing to see a TV personality who is fully deserving of his role rather than a name to put bums on seats.

With a beautiful set and stunning costume design from Richard Kent, its fun show which will leave you believing that quite literally on the S.S. American anything really does go!

Showing at the Opera House Tuesday 7th –Sat 18th April