It's the early Sixties and the two Davies brothers – Ray and Dave – are trying to get a new sound together built around Ray's very original songs. From the first (very loud) chords of You Really Got Me, to the show's amazing climax of Lola, you'll hear every Kinks smash hit.
And at the same time the story will unfold of how the group found success and what it did to them. This is by turns funny, moving, but most of all a great evocation of the Sixties – the dances, the clothes and the feeling that class no longer mattered.
The show cleverly mixes up songs performed as straight stage numbers by the group, with them being used, Mama Mia style, to move the story along. That's done by a wonderfully multi-talented cast.
While the four lads playing The Kinks themselves only take on one role – the rest of the 15 strong cast swap roles with dizzying ease as well as all dancing, singing and playing musical instruments. Watch out for Ben Caplan, better known as the lovely PC Noakes in Call The Midwife, showing he really knows how to shake a tambourine.
While the show is based on a story by Ray, the stand-out performance comes from George Maguire as Dave Davies. He not only looks uncannily like him but does rock star excess to a tee. (Expect spray from beer bottles in the first few rows!) As you'd expect from a story of a rock and roll band, sex and drugs do feature as well – but this is overwhelmingly a feel-good evening which will have you on your feet.
Sunny Afternoon is now booking at the Harold Pinter Theatre, Panton Street, London SW1Y 4DN, until Saturday, October 24, 2015. Prices from £15 to £90 for a VIP seat with table.
Box office: 0844 871 7627. For more information visit: sunnyafternoonthemusical.com.
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