Last night I was able to spend a couple of hours wrapped in a stunning London shaped hug. Taking me not only back to my roots, but also childhood, as I took in every second of joy as I reviewed the crucially acclaimed UK Tour My Fair Lady at the Palace Theatre Manchester.
A Little About The History Of My Fair Lady?
My Fair Lady” is a beloved classic musical that first premiered on Broadway in 1956. Based on George Bernard Shaw’s 1913 play “Pygmalion”. My Fair Lady follows young Cockney flower girl Eliza Doolittle, who is taken in by a professor of phonetics, Henry Higgins, to be taught how to speak and act like a lady.
The show’s original Broadway production starred Julie Andrews as Eliza Doolittle and Rex Harrison as Professor Henry Higgins. The critically acclaimed production ran for over six years, also going on to win six Tony Awards, including Best Musical.
1964 saw the release of the film adaptation of “My Fair Lady”, starring Audrey Hepburn as Eliza and Rex Harrison in his role as Higgins. The film was also a huge success and won several Academy Awards, including Best Picture.
Since its original production, “My Fair Lady” has performed all over the world. Thus becoming one of the most beloved musicals of all time. The show’s popularity is a testament to its timeless themes of class, love, and self-discovery, as well as its memorable score and characters.
What Is My Fair Lady About?
The story of “My Fair Lady” centres around the transformation of Eliza Doolittle (Charlotte Kennedy), a Cockney flower girl who has never had the opportunity for an education. Brought up by a selfish father Alfred P.Doolittle (Adam Woodyatt), who sees her meagre earnings as a pub slush fund and there lies his level of paternal instinct.
After a chance meeting outside a theatre in Covent Garden Eliza is taken in by Professor Henry Higgins (Michael D. Xavier). Higgins, a phonetics expert is fascinated with the idea of transforming Eliza from a “guttersnipe” into a lady. They set off on their endeavour with the help of Colonel Pickering (John Middleton) and Prof Higgins loyal household.
At first, Eliza is resistant to Higgins’ attempts to teach her. She finds him rude, bullish and condescending. Thus she struggles to adapt to his strict teaching methods. But with persistence and time she begins to transform into a refined and cultured lady. But will she fool high society?
My Review Of My Fair Lady UK Tour 2023
There’s always a risk when watching a much loved movie as a show? However My Fair Lady is testament to the fact that shows are generally a more alive version of movies. This was definitely the case with my fair lady. The cast delivered the story in the most wonderful, believable way that made you feel you were there living the story with them.
The set was incredible, moving through Victorian London seamlessly. Professor Higgin’s home was a wonderful living set that brought a whole new element to the production. The set did fail momentarily, however the team dealt with this quickly and professionally. Thus not distracting from the show.
Another strength of “My Fair Lady” is the music, which includes several memorable songs such as “Wouldn’t It Be Loverly,” “I Could Have Danced All Night,” and “Get Me to the Church on Time.” All delivered beautifully, filling the theatre with joy and very deserving of the standing ovation.
Should you go and see My Fair Lady? Absolutely if you love classic theatre and endearing love stories then this is one for you. It’s the ultimate feel good classic.
Where Can I See My Fair Lady?
Manchester Palace Theatre Manchester, Until Sat 1 Apr 2023, tickets are available from £13.00 plus booking fee. Keep an eye on the official website for more tour dates.
Please note I was gifted these tickets in return for an honest review. Click here for more theatre reviews.