THEATRE REVIEW - Rock of Ages

A scene from Rock of Ages

A scene from Rock of Ages

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AT many a church service of yesteryear, the hymn Rock of Ages was ever popular.

It was penned in 1763 and was voted one of the top four most-popular religious anthems.

Now the church has been replaced by a theatre and Rock of Ages is a block-buster of a show. It’s true, the contrast couldn’t be greater.

So it’s back to an era of rock in an era before musical technology altered everything – and not always for the better. We are on Sunset Strip in Hollywood where the hip chicks went to hear new music and meet up with new trends.

The place to be “in at the start” when a whole new era was going through its birth throes.

The thousands of rock fans all made sure they became part of the show, helped by members of the cast who cavorted in the aisles encouraging all to let down their hair. They needed little persuasion.

There are over 30 numbers but there’s also a story that twists and winds about the demolition on an iconic rock venue on Sunset Strip.

The show bursts with high energy, and is brought to dizzying life by dozens of players and musicians who ensure a fast and furious pace, bringing to life numerous rock favourites.

As the singer seeking love and fame, former Hear’Say member Noel Sullivan struts his stuff with style, and his voice is the best on stage. Alongside him, fit-as-a-fiddle and all-round show business actor personality Ben Richards was well received by the ladies in particular.

I anticipated that this would be blastingly loud. Well it was in parts, but by and large, the whole show was all the better for being audibly toned down. Just a tad. And the lovely layer of humour added to this great night out.

It’s true, the memories came flooding back. Suddenly we old rockers felt young again. I think.

On at Manchester Palace until weekend, then touring.