A Night at the Movies (the Pink Singers) - Cadogan Hall
25 January 2014
I have been following the Pink Singers for over 25 years - as an official choir camel
my choices in that respect are limited - and they have, through the years had their
ups and downs. However, over the past three years it has been nothing but ups, with
each concert o’ertopping the last. How, I thought , could they possibly beat their
last performance? Clearly cybernetics would be needed.
Well, cybernetics or not, they achieved it, and quite spectacularly. A Night at the
Movies provided stunning background visuals, complex dance movements (including a
spectacular lift in “Time of My Life”), and a cleverly themed programme that covered
the musical range from “Zadok the Priest” to “Skyfall”. The show was a carefully
managed mix of high culture and low camp, with a little middle-of-the-road - although
it was anything but mediocre!
Highlights of the evening? There are so many. I have never seen audience members
rise to their feet so often during a performance - and this when the seats are the
most comfortable in theatreland! However, mention should be made of some of the soloists.
Big voices came in small packages from KC (“I Will Always Love You”) and Max (“Les
Feuilles Mortes”); and Jules’ King Louie (“I Wanna Be Like You”) was a tour de force.
It was also a tour de tenors, which they seemed to take stoically, despite a banana
being produced from one of their noses. I’m now persuading Philip that he and Jules
are a comedy song waiting to happen.
However, the absolute top of the show for me was John’s performance of “Claire de
Lune” on the piano, accompanied by Paul’s signing. The love affair between the sea
and the moon became a love affair between music and BSL, a blending of two unspoken
forms producing poetry that would be inexpressible in English.
I could go on (the use of instrumental musical support throughout, courtesy of the
London Gay Big Band; the cello and oboe in “Gabriel’s Oboe”; The musical effects
used to sing wordless songs, like “Also Sprach Zarathustra” and “Mission Impossible”),
but you really had to be there … except you couldn’t because it was completely sold
So how did they do it? I’m not ruling out cybernetics; Philip seems to have been
getting through a lot of AA batteries lately…