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Review | Funny Girl - KMTC | Northwich Memorial Court | 20/10/2023

KMTC are rightly regarded as one of the finest community theatre groups in the North West, are celebrating their 80th year with Funny Girl. Having debuted on Broadway back in 1964 with Barbra Streisand, Funny Girl tells the true story of showgirl Fanny Brice and her turbulent relationship with husband Nick Arnstein. We follow her rise to fame, from being discouraged due to her looks to becoming adored by audiences.

As ever the KMTC company are incredible, bringing Broadway razmataz to Northwich! It is the ensemble numbers where the show really shines, with ‘Rat-tat-tat-tat’ in particular being a show highlight. Leading lady Kirsty Podlaski gives a fabulous performance as Fanny Brice, delivering the challenging iconic show stopping numbers ‘Don’t Rain On My Parade’ and ‘People’ effortlessly. Her interpretation of Fanny is wonderfully multi-layered, with the audience in the palm of her hand in both the humorous and more emotional moments.

Podlaski is supported by Joel Merry as husband Nick Armstein. After his exceptional KMTC debut earlier this year in Sweeney Todd, Merry proves once again that he is every bit the leading man and could easily be treading the west end boards. The stand out performances on this occasion go to Claire Moorhouse (Mrs Brice) and Jonathan Hall (Eddie) who are an absolute joy to watch throughout. I am patiently waiting for KMTC to get the rights to do Sunset Boulevard and cast Moorhouse as Norma Desmond!

As usual the fourteen-piece orchestra is absolutely outstanding. Staging was simple, compared to their recent productions, but the lighting (quite literally) took the limelight. Even the addition of table seating at the front was elevated with lamps which came on to signify the show scenes.

The story for Funny Girl itself is somewhat lacking, with pacing being an issue in the longer first act. The cast however are incredible and work hard to make up for the issues with the book. Funny Girl plays its last two performances today, see below for tickets to support this fantastic community theatre company.

Note: My ticket was gifted. Irrespective of whether a show is gifted or bought, I always ensure that my reviews are fair and based on my honest opinion alone.


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