Tail Feathers Spotted Shaking at Theatre Severn

CBB Presents

The Chicago Blues Brothers

Theatre Severn



One would imagine that at some time in your life you have become aware of the Blues Brothers?It is the wonderful cult film starring John Belushi and Dan Ackroyd. Undoubtedly one of the most important iconic and extremely funny films to come out  of the Nineteen Eighties. It observed all conventions of being an hilarious movie, became a hit and inspired a generation. All over the UK's pub and club scene, one could see Elwood’s with their harmonica cases chained to their wrists and one could see little, rotund John Belushi wannabees with their dead pan dance moves and total exuberance found from the fact that they are on mission from God..Got me?

Well that’s where this show was born and tonight they brought all that nostalgia back to the 1980’s when for some reason, we were all nostalgic for the Nineteen Fifties, only going to show nostalgia is a warm bath that we all love to immerse ourselves in every now and again when stark reality can be a place to escape for an hour or two. That is what was happening tonight. People were back in touch with a time they remember as being a happy time and and the English based Chicago Blues Brothers were there to accommodate such time travel wishes.

The whole journey was led by a rock solid backing band comprising of Horns, Keys, Guitars and Bass, Drums and some very tight and exciting vocals.  All the cast  created a feeling of seemy 1950's Chicago from their costumes alone. It was a well-dressed show.  The mis-en-scene was further assisted with some incredibly cool back projected drawn, “stills” from the movie in fact the whole projected picture show that accompanies this show is without doubt brilliantly put together. They are not new to the concept of using their audiences in their backdrop either, giving the audience the impression they can see themselves. They can’t… it’s from another show in another theatre but no one minded.

The backing singers were so much more. Not wishing in any way to denigrate the role of the backing vocalists one is usually unaware of what they can do alone. Not so with this band as they unselfishly pushed the two female vocalists, known as The Soul Sisters, to the front at every given opportunity and the girls delighted the crowd with their sultry, smokey vocals. You know the sexy voices that wouldn’t feel out of place in a Mike Hammer novel. Such is the level of excellence these girls have achieved with a very very lot of hard work and rehearsal. This one audience member was aware of the work the girls have put in and it was great.

Jake and Elwood Blues as the two male characters are called, were fantastic; Spot on. Jake really looked like Belushi and found his movement and mannerisms. Elwood Blues had that Dan Ackroyd presence his aloofness and his comedy..

To the audience tonight, they were the Blues Brothers and they have such an obvious hard-core following apparent throught the various Jakes and Elwoods that were dotted around the auditorium in their black glasses, boot lace ties and pork pie hats.

The Blues Brothers was a brilliant film. Belushi died so shortly after, so depriving the world of how the characters might have developed, tonight however, thanks to this talented bunch, Jake and Elwood arose again and guess what? They are still on a mission from God.

This Is a Three Star Review

Owen J.Lewis


Owen Lewis Owen Lewis

Owen Lewis was born fifty something years ago in the land of the black puddings. For the geographically challenged that is in Lancashire. Moving to Shropshire From 1970 Owen was brought up in Church Stretton. His first real job was in radio. After starting on BBC Radio Shropshire he became known on Marcher Sound, broadcasting throughout the North West for several years. After a university degree course in Theatre, Owen became an actor and went on to play "Pirate Bill" in The Alton Towers Hotel. He also made several television appearances. Returning to university he took his PGCE enabling him to teach. That saw him on the Essex coast as a drama teacher and latterly as a Creative Educational Liaison Officer making films and creating new teaching methods to employ on children in need of more help in their fundamental learning skills. Three times Published playwright Owen ultimately wants a house boat in Amsterdam to focus on his work as Playwright and Poet. See more on www.ojlwritingservices.co.uk.

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