Phew! Heatwave may be a little premature by seasonal standards but this showtime sizzler has all the ingredients for a hot summer success.
Celebrating his 25th year at Babbacombe Theatre with this, his 50th production, producer Colin Matthews has created a fast, slick show for the lengthy summer season at this appealing venue on The Downs.
Comedian Andy Oakley is at the helm. A regular on this stage, his easy, affable humour threads through the evening either as solo stand-up or in comic routines with Ben Nickless, and Johnny Edwards. An impressive all-round entertainer Oakley brings the house down with his hilarious take on Freddy Mercury - the Queen front man as you never saw him before.
Impressionist Ben Nickless returns after several seasons’ absence with a polished performance that has grown much more in confidence and style.
His squeaky voice is infectiously funny and his impressions are spot on. Amy Winehouse is first up in a raunchy take on the wild woman of pop. Then we have Cliff Richard tackling the hits of today followed by an outrageous Dolly Parton - complete with singing boobs.
Nickless shows that as well as lampooning the stars he can tug at our heart strings with his touching portrayal of Norman Wisdom singing Don’t Laugh At Me Cos I’m a Fool.
Paul Fordham and Lisa Walker are in fine voice as are two young Torbay’s Got Talent winners - Holly Cosgrove and Stephanie. Cosgrove gives a powerful performance as Lady Gaga and an emotional rendition of I Dreamed a Dream from Les Mis. Stephanie, who also plays guitar, sang On My Own with perfectly pitched poignancy.