Buddy – The Buddy Holly Story

Close your eyes for a moment, and you’ll be forgiven for thinking that music didn’t die on the 3rd February 1959.

Buddy – The Buddy Holly Story is the true story of Buddy’s rise to fame, from that moment in 1957 when ‘That’ll Be The Day’ hit the airwaves until his death less than two years later. Featuring over 20 of Buddy Holly’s greatest hits the show includes hits such as ‘Peggy Sue’, ‘Everyday’, ‘Oh Boy’, ‘Not Fade Away’ and many more.

Testament to the show’s enduring popularity, since opening at Theatre Royal, Plymouth, in August 1989, Buddy has enjoyed phenomenal success, having played a record-breaking 4450 performances over 556 weeks on tour in the UK and Ireland, as well as 5822 performances over 728 weeks in London’s West End. 2019 saw Buddy join a small – but lauded – number of iconic musicals including Les Miserables, Phantom of the Opera, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, Miss Saigon, Evita and Cats in reaching three decades on stage.

The 30 year anniversary tour has already played at iconic venues across the UK, but how will it fare in a cold and windy evening in Stoke-on-Trent’s fantastic Regent Theatre? The answer is … it would warm even the coldest of nights and have you on your feet dancing before you leave!

The exceptional cast of really do transport you back to the late 50’s and remind those young and old why Buddy Holly took the music industry by storm. It is also a stark reminder what a tragic loss it was when he, The Big Bopper and Richie Valens lost their lives. 

You see both Buddy and the characters around him develop through the evening with the live on stage instruments and vocals – an absolute pleasure to watch. This small but multi-talented cast really are sublime.

To pick out a few stand out performances A J Jenkins as Buddy seemed to have the essence of Buddy Holly running through his veins for the entire performance. The skill he showed to develop Buddy from the initial more reserved yet confident stages to the latter persona of a rock and roll star was only shadowed by the great musical talent he demonstrated playing the guitar with such skill and ease. The depiction of Buddy’s mannerisms and trademark hiccoughing were a site to be seen.

Very simple but extremely effective stage design help to move through the early months of Buddy’s meteoric rise, with many cast members playing multiple roles. Special mention to Harry Boyd, who flirted between subtly different accents to deliver convincingly different characters within the music industry. Harry is also a gifted trumpet player adding to the fantastic performances through the evening as more and more of the cast show their musical talents. 

Joe Butcher’s masterful control of the Double Bass whilst dancing around has to be mentioned as this really catches the eye throughout, and the talent of he, Josh Haberfield and Christopher Weeks really add power to the performances of Buddy Holly and the Crickets, bringing the famous music once again to life.

This truly is a feel good show for any theatre goer. Any Buddy Holly fans, rock and roll fans, theatre fans out there, it is a must see. It’s a fantastic venue hosting a fantastic show like this, do not miss it out!

Tickets are now available now for performances at The Regent Theatre from Wed 19th – Sat 22nd Feb 2020.

For full tour information click here

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