Sorry about the cheesy post title. I couldn’t resist. Anyway, last night I went to see the musical All Shook Up, performed by the marvelously talented members of Lights Up Productions. All Shook Up, contrary to what you might expect, is not a biography of Elvis, but it does feature many of his songs. The story is loosely based on Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, so there are classic Shakespeare comedy ingredients involved, including mistaken identity and people falling in love with the wrong people, and much silliness ensues.
I was actually quite unprepared for how funny this musical is. In fact, I didn’t really know what to expect at all, apart from the fact that lots of Elvis songs were involved. I deliberately didn’t try to find out much about it beforehand, or listen to the music (which you can do on Spotify, should you so wish), because I wanted it to be a surprise (as is usual if I go and see a show I haven’t seen before). Having seen the people of Lights Up Productions perform When Midnight Strikes in March this year, I was prepared for a good show, but I enjoyed All Shook Up even more than I expected to.
The songs are integrated really well – part of the comedy value comes from this, I think. One of the things that made me laugh the most was the actors’ facial expressions! There is a lot of physical comedy in the show, as well as some great lines. I don’t know how the cast managed to keep a straight face…well, apart from the fact that they had rehearsed very hard!
The arrangements of the songs are great and there are some lovely juicy harmonies in some of the numbers, especially in Can’t Help Falling In Love, which closes the first half. I was having a nice time getting lost in the harmonies at that point. I also spent quite a lot of time tapping my feet throughout the show, which probably annoyed the people I was sitting next to, but never mind. I came out of the show singing (well, humming) and dancing inside.
Watching All Shook Up was a joyful, life-enhancing experience. I hope the cast and crew enjoyed themselves as much as the audience did. They should be very proud of their performance. I’m only sorry the show finishes tonight, otherwise I would urge anyone reading this to go and see it!