Mamma Mia - what a finish!


CARNOUSTIE Musical Society’s annual revue entertained audiences this week.

Now in its third year, the Comrie Cabaret never fails to impress with its range of musical choices and quality of talent.

This year in the Comrie Hall the company was joined by solo cornet player Ross Ness who played two very technically complex and impressive pieces, as well as the children of the junior section for an all-action trip into some popular musicals.

First off, the company presented a medley of tunes from ‘Guys and Dolls’, which gave the ensemble scope to explore their gangster accents with aplomb.

Hot on their heels was the first of the dance spots, this time a sizzling selection of Latin moves that became increasingly complex with each new tune.

The musical ‘Hairspray’ then burst onto the stage, giving the audience that vibrant ‘60s feel with their colourful costumes, amusing lyrics and upbeat singing.

The first junior piece was a selection of ‘Annie’ classics, with the children all looking suitably orphaned for ‘Hard knock life’ as they scrubbed the stage floor.

A few favourites from ‘Showboat’ served to change the mood somewhat, with ‘Make believe’, ‘Bill’, ‘Can’t help lovin’ dat man’ and ‘Ol’ man river’ injecting a bittersweet sense of romance into the atmosphere.

The company then seamlessly switched to what has almost become the Carnoustie Musical Society leitmotif of their very well known ‘Les Miserables’ medley.

As always the passion they channel into their singing charged the air and raised hairs on the backs of necks.

The children again took to the stage to lighten the mood with ‘Flash bang wallop’ from ‘Half a sixpence’, and they poured their enthusiasm into the song and dance number to great effect.

With a seemingly endless supply of energy, the dancers, who are all ensemble members, gave their colleagues a chance to regroup while they fired through another round of high tempo and eye catching dance routines.

After a brief stop for the raffle and a comedy skit from Rodger Brunton and the boys, Ross Ness entertained with his second cornet solo with ‘Carnaval’.

The audience was promised a foot-stomping finale, and they got it in the form of an extended ‘Mamma Mia’ medley.

A selection of classic Abba songs built up from a soulful and almost melancholy start with ‘I have a dream’. As the rest of the company joined the singing, and the music changed to ‘Mamma Mia’, and ‘Honey, Honey’ the sound became bright, brash and full of fun.

A particular favourite was the arrangement of ‘Super Trouper’ which started off a capella and when the piano eventually did join in it took advantage of the hall’s acoustics to fill the place with sound.

The final two parts, ‘Waterloo’ and a reprise of ‘Mamma Mia’ delivered the promised foot-stomping and the show ended with the entire company belting out a song that left the audience very upbeat and showing their appreciation with a thunder of applause.

Each of the soloists brought something special to their parts, whether it be a touch of the Tina Turner, a sweet innocence, or a rumbling bass, but unfortunately, there just wasn’t the space to go into every single solo and duet, of which there were many.

Musical director Colin Grant has put together some excellent arrangements, while director Rodger Brunton has made some excellent choices to showcase the range of talent Carnoustie Musical Society can offer.

Choreographer Lynsey Ellen Faulkner had her work cut out for in this show. Not only did she have to contend with coordinating the ensemble, but she also took part in the two dance slots.

At the time of going to press there were still two tickets left for the performance tonight (Friday), and these can be purchased at the Fobel Shop on Park Avenue.