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REVIEW: Fastlove - A Tribute to George Michael
Cheltenham, The Everyman Theatre
Direct from London’s West End, Fast Love brought the world’s favourite George Michael tribute act to The Everyman Theatre on the 18th of January 2019. With the anniversary of George Michael’s death on Christmas day, the show celebrates the life and spirit of George Michael by featuring a mix of George Michael and Wham’s greatest hits, including Club Tropicana, Jitterbug, Faith and many more!
As the first song Fast Love on the setlist begins, it’s a couple minutes in before Joseph Sansome, who performs as George actually comes onto the stage. Hearing Joseph’s voice before he struts onto stage makes the audience realise how similar Joseph and George’s voices really are, almost as if there's a live recording of the real George Michael singing in the background.
When Joseph does appear on stage, he immediately brings the energy of George Michael to the audience, capturing the style of the legend in his later years, Joseph looks incredibly similar to the star in the trademark Rayban sunglasses and blazer.
Not only this, but Joseph gives such an engaging, entertaining performance that it was almost impossible for the audience to stay seated as Joseph got the audience dancing, singing and on one occasion putting their phone torches in the air. This atmosphere meant that there was not one moment in the performance that the audience wasn’t at least clapping along with their favourite songs!
But what is a great frontman without a brilliant team? Supported by an amazing band with backing singers and an arrange of instruments such as the keyboard, guitars, drums, bass, and even a saxophone Tanya Payne played in multiple solos throughout the performance, without such a great band it would’ve been impossible to truly bring the show to life.
Not only was the show made exceptional by Fastlove’s talented band, but it was also very much brought to life by the four female dancers (Ellie, Heather, Annie and Kyra) who jazzed up many of the songs with some expertly choreographed dancing. In particular, the dancers came into their own during the Wham! songs, dressed in elaborate outfits, the girls brought the 80s vibe with their colourful fringe playsuits for Club Tropicana, full sequin jumpsuits and visors for Freedom and a bodysuit with a coloured wig for Young Guns.
During the interval of the show, an audience member who had previously been to the Birmingham performance related their amazement that the band was able to put on such a huge, entertaining performance, almost as if they were at an arena not a small theatre in the heart of Cheltenham.
In fact, illustrating the sheer success of the show, Joseph informed the audience that Fastlove will soon be touring around the biggest arenas in the UK, including the Hammersmith Apollo, Newcastle City Hall, Cardiff Arena and many more!
Fastlove really is a fabulous night out for any George Michael fan, big or small, everyone can appreciate the legend in the vast array of songs played by the band. Although Joseph states “I could never sing as good as George” before singing the emotional song A Different Corner, Joseph comes close to perfect, matching George’s impressive vocal range and even falsetto in the performance.
So if you missed the performance of Fast Love, why not check out their website on the link below for their 2019 tour dates as the cast visit over 100 different stages across the UK.
Article by Charlotte Cottenham
The Mystery Reviewer
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