Lewis Griffiths, Tim Driesen, Sam Ferriday and Stephen Webb - The Tour Seasons
The very first UK Tour of Jersey Boys kicked off at the Palace Theatre in Manchester on 4 September and last night I attended the performance at the New Alexandra Theatre in Birmingham, with my partner Andy and long time fan Mark Garvey and his wife Alison. What an absolutely fantastic way to start the Christmas festivities – the show was brilliant. Being a huge fan of the original four West End Jersey Boys, Ryan Molloy, Stephen Ashfield, Glenn Carter and Philip Bulcock I did not think anything could come close to their performance and the close camaraderie they showed on stage but I have to say this came a very close second.
The cast are terrific with Tim Driesen playing Frankie Valli. Tim has a really amazing voice and a superb falsetto. Stephen Webb was outstanding as the lovable rouge Tommy DeVito and played the part extremely well. Local lad Sam Ferriday was just brilliant as Bob Gaudio and Lewis Griffiths was an incredible Nick Massi. Matt Gillett was excellent as Bob Crewe and it was quite poignant to watch his scenes following the recent death of Bob Crewe “I’m seeing it in sky blue”. They well deserved the standing ovations they received. If you have not seen the show then I would highly recommend it. The show at the Alex runs until the 4 January and then will be playing at Canterbury, Milton Keynes, Southend, Aberdeen, Woking, Dublin, Bradford, Oxford, Bristol, Liverpool, Norwich, Wales Millennium Centre, Southampton, Sunderland, Sheffield, Llandudno and Glasgow. To book tickets or for further information and dates click here:
So a great end to what has been a great year with the start of the Jersey Boys UK Tour, the announcement of the 2015 UK Tour by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons and the release of Jersey Boys the Movie. Another movie in the headlines this year is the Story of Northern Soul which features the original version of “The Night” a massive UK Northern Soul hit in the 1970’s. The 2012 version of this song, with superb arrangements by Robby Robinson, was done especially for the UK tour that year with Brian Brigham (who has been with Frankie almost 12 years now) performing the background parts with Frankie. A wonderful version of this popular song.
A short film done by Ryan, Glenn, Philip and Stephen featuring a song that was not played in Jersey Boys although the lyrics “If you’ve got a home and family you’ve got much more than me” were. The song “Everybody Knows My Name' (from the 'Working My Way Back To You' album December 1965) captures the desolate creativity of being on the road can be heard here:
Check out also the ‘Unforgettable’ CD which features Frankie Valli and The Fours Seasons Joy to The World Medley: Deck The Halls/God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/Away In A Manager and Joy To The World available now from Amazon.
So it just remains for me, on behalf of the UK Appreciation Society, to wish you all a very merry Christmas and a happy and successful New Year.