Who’d’ve thought a story about the coal miners strike and a ballet dancing boy would do so well? Welcome to Billy Elliot, the smash 2000 British film that took the country by storm adapted for stage and now on a full UK Tour.
Billy Elliot is a musical I’ve wanted to see for years and years after rave reviews and over 80 awards worldwide. I loved the film and after watching the trailer I was giddy with excitement to see it brought to life on stage. We bundled into the Hippodrome press centre, took selfies wearing tutus and boxing gloves (of course!) and took our seats for a story of working class pride and following your dreams.
The story sees young Billy Elliot from County Durham in the 1980’s during the famous coal miners strike. Billy loves to dance and accidentally stumbles into a local ballet class instead of the boxing session his father is paying for him to attend. Spotted by his enthusiastic teacher Mrs Wilkinson she trains Billy up and manages to get him an audition for the prestigious Royal Ballet School but when Billy’s father finds out about his new hobby everything could be put into jeopardy.
I can tell if I’m going to like a play within the first 5 minutes and considering Billy Elliot gave me goosebumps with it’s opening number you can probably guess what I thought about this one. I loved the set, the songs were oh so singable and it flowed beautifully sticking well to the original film with all the iconic scenes we know and love.
Lewis Smallman played our Billy for press night at the Hippodrome and he absolutely blew us all away. His acting, dancing and singing were fabulous and he completely stole the show – very nearly upstaged by Mr Braithwaite at one point, look forward to that part!
With strong northern accents, lots of swearing, laughs a minute and some pretty powerful songs Billy Elliot is an absolute triumph to watch. A heartwarming story of ambition and pride that shows us no matter what is going on in the world there is always room for dreams.
Billy Elliot is showing at The Birmingham Hippodrome until the 29th April – Tickets on sale at the box office NOW!