The story of justice served by a masked vigilante, with an injection of Spanish and gypsy culture, set in Los Angeles before it was overrun with Kardashians, what is not to love! Zorro the Musical tells us the tale of a town and of the two brothers who hold its fate in their hands. Family drama, love interests and a lot of dancing and drinking do ensue.
Gypsy culture of the Iberian peninsula played a large part in the production with the ensemble serenading the audience in beautiful folklike chants from start to finish, capitalising on the tensest of moments. When the chants were over, and the performers started adding words, things got a little less ethereal. Many songs mixed in some Spanish, and the stark mispronunciation of simple Spanish words really jolted the audience out of the story.
The audience sitting on both sides of the stage, a particularity to the Charing Cross Theatre, lent itself well to this production. Large energetic dance numbers drew the audience in, even if sometimes they interrupted some of the tensest plot points. The fun sword choreography, lightning fast costume changes and even the use of fire kept the audience entertained when the plot sometimes couldn’t.
Paige Fenlon, who played Luisa – childhood best friend to the vigilante, stood out with impeccable vocals, and an ability to bring fun and sombreness to one of the sadder roles. The slightly clumsy but loveable Sergeant Garcia played by Marc Pickering is by far the highlight of the show. In the first half he provides some comic relief when everything seems a little too serious. But he even has a beautiful story arc, with his character developing in the second half, with some serious laugh out loud moments too!
Overall, the show fell slightly flat in the plot area, and some of the supporting characters stole the spotlight from the bigger roles, but the big dance numbers and gypsy chants redeemed it.
Zorro the Musical is running at Charring Cross Theatre until 28th May. Get your tickets here.
Photo Credit: Pamela Raith