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Buddy - Still Bopping A Quarter Of A Century On
Phil Hopkins, Theatre & Travel Correspondent
He was the clean-cut rock star with manners and the boy next door with the horn-rimmed glasses, who changed the world forever on May 27th, 1957 when he released That'll Be the Day.

And when Buddy Holly died tragically in an air crash on February 3rd, 1959, alongside Ritchie 'La Bamba' Valens and the Big Bopper, aka JP Richardson, he left a legacy that still resounds through international culture this very day.

And his music is as timeless in 2017 as it was then, forcing every bone in your body to leap from its seat in denial that rock 'n' roll has the ability to touch something deep within.

Also by Phil Hopkins...
Barbershop Chronicles - A Cut Above
Fizzy Fun For A Dreary Day
A Season For All Men
Creeps You Will Love!
Golem - Fantastic Theatre At Its Best
Which is why Buddy the musical, telling the Buddy Holly story, is such a tour-de-force, packing houses but dependent almost entirely for its success, on the quality of its leading man.

Last night it was the turn of Alex Fobbester, who rotates the part with Glen Joseph, not surprisingly because it is hugely demanding in every facet of musical theatre; libretto, lyrics and musical talent, with the ability, of course, to combine all three seamlessly. And Fobbester did just that.

This show has had more Buddys than a First World War Pals Battalion and, somehow, the casting directors keep turning them out like an X Factor production line and has done for more than a quarter of a century.

However, that does not lessen the talents of those leading the current UK wide tour.??Buddy - The Buddy Holly Story, tells the tale of a young boy who shot to stardom in the 1950s. The show is set in an America of great political and cultural change, and works as a showcase for the music genre that sparked the American youth movement - effectively 'the invention of the teenager'.

Jordon Cunningham as Ritchie Valens gyrated his hips so much that I felt sure the screw in the middle holding him together, was about to come loose!

The Crickets were tighter than a Yorkshireman with his generosity removed, and the Big Bopper, aka Thomas Mitchells, high-kicked better than a Tiller girl with leg extensions.

This was a fun-packed, tragic, uplifting show that left the public gagging for more. If you love rock 'n' roll then grab the blue suede shoes and hightail it to Bradford and Hollywood central! You've only got tonight and tomorrow!

Until Sat July 15th, 2017
Bradford Alhambra

Buddy - Still Bopping A Quarter Of A Century On, 14th July 2017, 14:12 PM