REVIEW: ‘Sister Act’ is hilarious, heartwarming and packed with joyful musical numbers

The cast of 'Sister Act'

The cast of 'Sister Act' - Credit: Archant

‘Sister Act’ the musical, at the Cambridge Corn Exchange until Saturday (17), is hilarious, heartwarming and full of unforgettable musical numbers.

Selfie with one of the nuns.

Selfie with one of the nuns. - Credit: Archant

I must confess that I hadn’t seen the classic movie starring Whoopi Goldberg before the show; but after last night’s performance it’s on the top of my to-do list.

Undoubtedly one of the best productions that the venue has hosted this year, the audience - varying between young children, twenty-somethings and middle aged to older adults - left with massive smiles on their faces.

And that’s because there’s nothing to dislike about this musical comedy: the costumes are a perfect fit to the 1970s setting, the dancing is seamless (it is choreographed by Strictly Come Dancing favourite Craig Revel Horwood after all), the musical instruments are incorporated fluently, the characters are likeable and effortlessly funny and the songs veer between breathtakingly emotive and incomparably joyous. It’s virtually faultless.

The story follows sassy and self-empowered yet endearing and loveable disco diva Deloris Van Cartier (played to perfection by Joanna Francis, whose spellbinding vocals could give Alexandra Burke a run for her money) as she searches for stardom and fame.


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But after she witnesses a murder at the hands of her club boss lover and the show’s suave yet manipulative villain, Curtis (convincingly conveyed by American performer Aaron Lee Lambert), she’s forced to go into hiding... at a convent, of all places!

What she finds is a community of hilariously out of tune nuns who are living their lives strictly by the rules. But it doesn’t take long before Deloris is injecting some much needed fun and soul into their lives, as she takes over as choir leader and becomes a Sister for life.

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The end result is nothing short of phenomenal, and leads to the Sisters performing for the Pope. Anything is possible, it seems.

Along the way we meet Sister Mary Lazarus (Rosemary Ashe), the troublemaker of the nuns who becomes a Honey G style rapper providing plenty of laughs; the screeching but consistently hilarious - without even trying - Sister Mary Patrick (Susannah Van Den Berg) who plays a sort of Miranda role; and the suppressed Sister Mary Robert (watch out for Sarah Goggin’s impressive solo numbers; her vocals are flawless).

You’ll be singing ‘Take Me To Heaven’ for many days to come, and we even managed to get a selfie with the funniest one of the sisters at the end.

Visit www.cambridgelivetrust.co.uk/cornex/events/sister-act for more information and to book tickets.

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