Following a three year run in London’s West End, ROCK OF AGES The Musical is visiting 26 venues around the UK, playing at The Bristol Hippodrome from Monday 7th to Saturday 12th July 2014.
Rock of Ages is ‘mix-tape’ musical – a story of dreams, love and of course, a celebration of classic 80s rock.
In the 1980s, Los Angeles was witness to a new breed of rock music known as “Glam metal” or “hair metal”. A small town innocent young wannabe actress Sherrie Christian, arrives in town and lands herself a waitressing job at The Bourbon Room club on Sunset Strip. She meets aspiring rocker Drew and the couple fall for each other. When Superstar lead singer of the band “Arsenal”, Stacee Jaxx turns up on the scene, he puts a spanner in the romantic works and heartbreak follows.
Obviously I wouldn’t want to spoil the storyline for you, but I’m sure you can guess which of the guys might get the girl in the end.
The men’s outfits are completely over the top with a number of the cast looking like rock charicatures in wigs – but this is glam rock and I suppose that’s a pretty accurate representation of the times. Come to think of it, I was a bit of a rock chick in those days and I seem to recall that it would’ve been a bit of a social faux pas to leave the house without an absurd amount of crimping, backcombing, hairspray and black eyeliner!
As for the women’s costumes – well, most of them weren’t really wearing enough clothes to mention . . .
If you like eighties rock music then you’ll probably have a ball listening to one familiar track after another. The show features loads of memorable tunes such as, ‘We Built This City’, ‘The Final Countdown’, ‘I Wanna Know What Love Is’ and ‘Don’t Stop Believin’. The music is loud and action packed with dancing. You could get out of breath just watching it.
The band also deserves a mention as they were tremendous – performing from a stage within the main stage alongside the rest of the cast.
The audience was certainly appreciative of the music throughout. “I can’t fight this feeling” was particularly popular and was met with deafening applause!
Theres one comic moment after another from Lony (Stephen Rahman-Hughes) who plays the narrator. He has the audience in stitches each time he appears – almost before opening his mouth.
Rock of Ages is s a story of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll and as such, you get quite a bit of bad language for your money, with “Arsehole” and “Oh crap” being at the milder end of the scale. I won’t type the stronger expletives as this is a family site!
Oh and these are sexist times, so it’s no surprise that there’s a strip joint, featuring lap dancers and pole dancers in overtly sexual costumes, with grunting and grinding aplenty. Scantily clad groupies wear very little over their push up bras, stockings and suspenders.
The frumpy protester, Regina offers a glimmer of girl power but goes on to explain that her name is pronounced ‘Ragina’, to rhyme with vagina!
So is this one suitable for kids? Nah, not really!
There were some audio issues on opening night. From our box the music was very loud and we found some of the dialogue hard to follow. We evidently missed some funny lines as the audience below us were in fits whilst were mouthing at each other “What did they say?”
It may not be family friendly but it is really funny and completely over the top. There is masses of catchy, loud, fast paced, familiar rock music which might well make you want to dance. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen an audience at The Hippodrome so animated before!