I had heard so many great things about this Musical before I saw it. But I didn’t know anything about the story, or know any of the songs. I had seen that Michelle Visage was starring for a few weeks, so well done advertisers. You knew I was a Ru Paul fan.
Whilst I had some free time in London, I decided to pop along and see what all the fuss was about. Firstly, I bought back row tickets. Literally, the furthest away from the stage but as with a lot of Matinees, it didn’t sell out so I was upgraded. To the middle of the stalls. WIN.
And I need to start by saying, THIS MUSICAL IS AMAZEBALLS. Spoiler alert.
Jamie is the new Billy Elliot
Jamie is a sixteen year old boy living on a council estate in Sheffield. But he’s not just any boy. He’s got a dream to be the next superstar drag queen. He is loud, proud and openly gay, which comes with its fair share of bullying and shaming.
But with the loving support of his family and friends, he finds his inner confidence and makes a high heeled stand against the idiots of this world. He is MiMi. The sassy as *enter swear word here* drag Queen of Sheffield and soon the world.
This whole show is uplifting, inspirational and fun. You immediately love Jamie, and want him to fight against the odds to live his dream. Did you know there is going to be a British Drag Race? Jamie would be a sure fire winner! Pass him that crown, girl.
The music is a celebration of bubblegum pop inspired by the likes of Whitney, Britney and Madonna. The blazers are bright, the heels are high and the sass is real. The second half does get slower and more soulful, but overall this Musical really left me buzzing.
On a more personal note
This whole show felt relevant. Coming from a working class background and a fairly rough town myself, it really resonated. I grew up with that Northern accent and knew all of the characters on stage. From his mum’s hard as nails best friend to the evil high school bully and introverted boffin. They were part of my childhood. I just hope today’s youth are less judgemental and cruel. People shouldn’t have to fight to be who they are.
Everybody’s talking about Jamie and so should you. It’s no surprise it made my 2018 top five theatre list. It is a cultural phenomenon and brings out the glitter in the grey.
Photo credit: Alastair Muir