Theatre Review: Madagascar The Musical

By Anna Rogers | 27th February 2019


Based upon the DreamWorks motion picture, Madagascar the Musical is everything you hoped it would be, and then some.

Bringing their electric, vibrant and buzzing energy to the York Theatre Royal’s stage, the cast and crew deliver a sumptuous feast of slick choreography, zingy musical numbers and infectious giggles. Following the well-known antics and adventures of Central Park Zoo’s inmates: Alex the Lion (Matt Terry), Marty the Zebra (Antoine Murray- Straughan), Melman the Giraffe( Jamie Lee-Morgan), Gloria the Hippopotamus (Timmika Ramsay) and mischievous savvy Penguins (Shane McDaid/Matthew Pennington/Laura Johnson/Jessica Niles/Victoria Boden), the audience journey from the sparkling city lights of New York to the exotic delights of the wilds of Madagascar.

The cast and crew deliver a sumptuous feast of slick choreography, zingy musical numbers and infectious giggles.

A family show for all ages, whether you’re five or fifty, Madagascar fever dazzles you with its playful, heart felt characters and fabulous talent. The musical score and numbers are catchy, memorable and left plenty of bottoms wiggling on seats, and not just the under tens! A sea of smiling audience members is a rare and beautiful sight, but one which this cast successfully achieved within minutes of the curtain going up.

The ultimate highlight is without a doubt the bombastic, eccentric lemur King Julien, played by the fabulous Jo Parsons, who clearly lapped up every second of playing the outlandish character. “I like to move it” royally raised the roof, echoing the love for Parson’s King Julien. High praise must go to the puppeteer team for their skilled and effortless performances, beautifully bringing to life the loveable Penguins and Lemurs without so much as a glitch or a hitch.

The real test though is what the ‘smalls’ think: after all, they are the harshest of critics and happily this show didn’t disappoint mine. My six year-old daughter rated this as a “five big big stars" and left the theatre brimming with excitement begging me to take her again. Her little beaming face as we left was one of many, and that speaks volumes. Fans of the film absolutely won’t want to miss this delicious family musical.

You can catch Madagascar the Musical at York Theatre Royal until 2 March.

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