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Although it’s billed as a new musical, this cabaret style show has actually been around since 2011 and has been popping up in various venues ever since then. Written, directed and co-produced by Matthew Bugg (who also takes on a couple of minor roles and, along with the rest of the busy cast, provides the musical accompaniment on more instruments than I could keep track of) it aims to evoke the spirit of wartime London in 1942 with its warnings of possible air raids, illicit sex and enjoy-it-while-you-can attitude.

The plot aims to cover quite a bit of ground, but could still do with some rewriting. Nurse Maggie has an unsatisfactory relationship with the caddish, black marketeering and blackmailing Tom (who’s never going to leave his wife) but finds fame as a music hall singer under the guidance of war hero impresario Sir Frank Worthington-Blythe and her composer flatmate (Matthew Floyd Jones’ George who’s not only Polish and Jewish but gay to boot) who becomes his illegal lover.

But it’s the songs - performed with gusto by the cast of six - which are the main attraction. Unfortunately, the lyrics sometimes get lost in the otherwise attractive Hippodrome auditorium (tucked away in an intimate space a floor above the vast expanse of the gambling casino below)  which is considerably longer than it is wide  - a problem when a singer faces away from your table.  Still, there’s no questioning the cheeky wit of “Sausage Song,” (a naughty ditty reminding you that “You’ve got to get your sausage where you can”) or “The Pussy Song” (which definitely isn’t about a cat getting stuck in the door)  in this fun and undemanding production.

Hippodrome, Leicester Square, WC2H 7 JH

 Tube: Leicester Square

Until 6th May 2018   (Wednesday to Sunday)

£22.50- £42.50 plus premier seats   (over 18’s only)

www.hippodromecasino.com


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