Amelie the Musical is an adaptation of the wonderfully popular French film of the same name. The 2001 movie is a romantic dream-flick so I was tres excited to catch this stage version. But did I deteste or amour? (The only french I can remember) Well…
This Parisian story is a peculiar wonder.
Amelie is the simple story of a girl different to the world around her. Her secluded upbringing leaves her socially awkward and incredibly imaginative. Living in her head is the norm until completing random acts of kindness leads her to unexpected love. The story is sparse yes, but I tell you what, they make up for it in two of the most gorgeous ways…
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The music is infectious.
No need for an orchestra in this production. Talented actor musicians fill the stage with their folky sounds, never missing a beat and drift the set in their bohemian fashions. I was totally transfixed. The heart and soul of this story is perfectly encapsulated by their organic sounds.
The set is magic.
An old fashioned, steam punk like metropolitan station, street lamp and clock dress the stage. And sitting sweetly in the middle; a photo booth. This becomes the epicenter of the staging and transforms into a wall, door, confession booth and phone box. And Amelie’s apartment? I’ll not ruin the surprise but her route home is delightful.
Audrey Brisson is genius casting and perfectly portrays a naive, innocent but kind and just Amelie. Her vocals are glorious. Danny Mac pulls off a soft and nonchalant Nino with powerful vocals to boot.
Now, admittedly there are some bizarre moments in the story from a giant gnome to nightmare figs and an Elton John parody, that I kind of just went with… And there was a short period in the first half that became very sleepy but otherwise it was spot on.
This musical is off-kilter. It’s sweet, slow, quaint, quirky, surprising and endearing. It might be marmite? But that’s what I loved. It was different. I don’t think I’ve ever been as relaxed in a musical. I was slowly whisked away into an effortless french fantasy.
Amelie the Musical is an utterly charming and imaginative creation. Escape reality and buy tickets today.
Amelie toured until October 2019.