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 Post subject: "Our House" - the Madness musical
PostPosted: Wed Oct 30, 2002 5:12 am 
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Location: London, England; Tallinn, Estonia
Maddeningly merry
Charles Spencer reviews Our House at the Cambridge Theatre for The Times


Madness were one of the all-time great singles bands, and whenever one of their hits comes on the radio, they still bring a smile to my face. The band's mixture of ska rhythms and wittily observant Britpop has proved surprisingly enduring, and their singles collection, Divine Madness, became a huge seller years after the group had broken up.

So, at a time when the West End has discovered through shows such as Mamma Mia! and We Will Rock You! that old hits put bums on seats, Madness were clearly strong contenders for the musical makeover treatment.

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<small>[ 10-30-2002, 06:14: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: "Our House" - the Madness musical
PostPosted: Sat Nov 02, 2002 9:47 am 
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Our House
By peter Hepple from The Stage

With a sackful of hits to their credit, it is not surprising that Madness should be given the retrospective musical treatment. And even though the group's songs are all similar in style, Tim Firth has done a good job concocting a plot around them.

He takes the title Our House literally, setting the action in and around the humble Camden Town abode of Kath Casey and her son Joe, which is under threat of demolition from ruthless property developer Harold Pressman.

He then adds a 'what if?' twist. What if 16-year-old Joe had not persuaded his girlfriend Sarah to join him in trespassing upon the property – thus earning himself a spell in young offenders institution – and instead had opted to help Pressman in his scheme, embarking on a career of borderline crime instead?

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 Post subject: Re: "Our House" - the Madness musical
PostPosted: Tue Nov 05, 2002 3:41 am 
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Location: Guildford, Surrey, UK
Review from The Independent.

Quote:
It's Madness. Yes, the ska band of larky skinheads from north London are making a comeback in the West End. Twenty-odd years after they first stormed the charts, their peppy and punchy anthems have been worked into a new musical entitled Our House. If you were an adolescent in the Eighties, as I was, numbers like "Baggy Trousers" and "House Of Fun" may well still make you want to dance dementedly. This, of course, entails collectively squishing into a conga-style line and jerking around like rusty automatons. The question is, wouldn't we rather be doing this at home with the curtains drawn?

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 Post subject: Re: "Our House" - the Madness musical
PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2002 1:46 am 
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Madness' house of fun
By Neil Smith for BBC News Online


First it was Abba, then Queen. Now Madness have become the latest '80s band to have their back catalogue plundered in a West End musical.

But where Mamma Mia and We Will Rock You were exercises in audience manipulation, Our House does at least keep faith with its source.

Suggs and co have given their wholehearted support to the show, writing new material and making the now-obligatory curtain call at Monday's star-studded press night.

Despite Tim Firth's convoluted and downbeat book, this is a fitting tribute to the exuberance and wit of those Nutty Boys from Camden.

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 Post subject: Re: "Our House" - the Madness musical
PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2003 7:13 am 
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Welcome to the house of fun - with Suggs himself as guide
Dominic Cavendish for The Daily Telegraph reviews Our House at the Cambridge Theatre.


Too chirpy by half: that was the faintly damning verdict meted out on the Madness musical Our House when it opened last October, and the show has struggled at the box office ever since.

Relaunched now after scooping the Best Musical award at the Oliviers, and with the band's beloved frontman Suggs making his West End debut for one week only in a minor but pivotal role, this time fate seems to be conspiring against its survival: the triple whammy of war, heightened fears about terrorism and a next-to-useless tube system threaten to make stay-at-homes of us all.

Well, it would be a crying shame if this brilliant, boisterous entertainment were to fall by the wayside. There can be no musical in town more likely to lift depressed spirits, calm nerves and restore a sense of joy in London life than Tim Firth's treatment of Madness's mighty back catalogue.

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 Post subject: Re: "Our House" - the Madness musical
PostPosted: Fri Jun 27, 2003 1:49 am 
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This seems a shame, but it's good news that thre is a tour planned:

West End doors close for musical Our House
by Ruth Gillespie from The Stage


Our House, the award-winning musical inspired by the band Madness, is to close at the Cambridge Theatre on August 16 after what producers have described as "difficult times".

Winner of the Olivier Award for Best New Musical, Our House received positive reviews during its ten-month run. However, producer Peter Bennett-Jones has called the show "the latest casualty of political and economic difficulties" and the musical will vacate its West End home with the expectation of a UK tour next year.

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