Monday was a strange day for me. I had offered to go and help with a corporate event in Manchester in the early hours of the morning, but I did not foresee leaving the house at 6.15am and returning home after 1am. The day ran away with itself and before I know it, I am at an opening night of a musical in Buxton. Not that I am complaining of course, I love the theater and it was amazing to see what is a relatively new show on tour across the UK.
All Or Nothing is a musical about the life and times of The Small Faces during The Mod movement in Britain during the 60’s and early 70’s. Being an 80’s child myself, I knew the songs but I was not aware of the rise and fall, and the back story to the band. The musical was very cleverly put together, using a narrative delivery to the audience through the eyes of the late Steve Marriot, sort of a ghost, reliving his memories. Throughout the show, Chris Simmons delivery of the older Steve Marriot mirrors that of his younger self, with the excitement and joy of being in a band turning to anguish and despair as the years went on.
The songs of The Small Faces, as well as other iconic tracks from Sonny and Cher, P.P Arnold and Dusty Springfield are performed live, with the cast performing the instruments themselves on stage. It is a hybrid tribute concert and musical in one. Small touches though out the show, including the authentic costume changes, psychedelic lighting to the seating blocks which are used on stage with each side of the block depicting a different era, show that the attention to detail is second to none. It is obvious that the cast love what they do each night and were alive with excitement after the standing ovation finale which was given at the Buxton Opera House.
Even if you are not a child of the 60’s, I would still urge you to go see this show. It is a slice of British history and a look into the twisted world of the record industry, which I believe is very much the same now, but people are getting more than £20 a week as wages! The show is just over half way through its tour of the UK and is worthwhile catching while you can. You will be tapping your foot during the first half, and up dancing by the end.
Check out the tour dates for All Or Nothing on the website. Do you have a favourite Small Faces song or have you already seen the show on tour? I would love to hear your thoughts below.
Thanks to Steph from GO:PR Manchester for inviting me along to the show at Buxton Opera House.