Tag Archives: Lauren Samuels

NEWS: The world’s most successful musical theatre group hit Glasgow this month.

Collabro will be back on the road next month for their biggest ever tour and have announced some very special guests joining them across the UK.  West End and Broadway Star Kerry Ellis and BBC1’s Over the Rainbow Finalist and We Will Rock You Star Lauren Samuels will be joining the boys on selected dates.

Collabro, the world’s most successful musical theatre group, met in 2014 for their first rehearsal at a London pub, just a month later went on to rouse the whole of Hammersmith Apollo into a standing ovation during their first ever public performance of ‘Stars’ for the Britain’s Got Talent judges.

Since winning Britain’s Got Talent four years ago with one of the biggest majorities ever Collabro have released a Number 1 debut album “Stars”, followed by “Act Two” which peaked at Number 2, performed at the Royal Variety Performance; been voted ‘The Nation’s Favourite BGT Winner’ and are now enormously successful internationally. Notably, they have performed for over 30 million people in Japan on Music Station on two separate occasions – receiving a Gold Disc for Best International Artist alongside Sam Smith and Meghan Trainor. They have also completed two tours of America and signed a major US record deal.

2018 has already seen Collabro embark on a sold-out tour of Asia, performed as special guests on Barry Manilow’s UK Arena Tour and release their fourth studio album ‘Road To The Royal Albert Hall’ for more information go to Officialcollabro.com.

The musical theatre group’s ‘Road to the Royal Albert Hall’ Tour will be kicking off at South Shields Customs House on February 10th and will see the group perform at a variety of intimate theatres and iconic venues over three months, before finishing the tour at the world renowned Royal Albert Hall in London. Collabro will also have Youth Choirs to accompany them at each venue of their 51 date UK Tour alongside support Georgia and The Vintage Youth.

Tickets are on sale now and available from www.gigsandtours.com / 0844 811 0051, www.ticketmaster.co.uk / 0844 826 2826, and direct from venue box offices.


support from Georgia and The Vintage Youth (all dates except 14th and 15th Feb)

support from Larissa Eddie 14th, 15th Feb and 20th April only

Special guest Kerry Ellis will be performing at dates highlighted as *

Special guest Lauren Samuels will be performing at dates highlighted as +


February 2019

Sun 10 South Shields Customs House +

Mon 11 Chester Storyhouse *

Tue 12 Milton Keynes Theatre *

Thu 14 Carlisle Sands Centre +

Fri 15 Buxton Opera House *

Sat 16 Matinee – Leeds City Varieties Music Hall *

Sat 16 Evening – Leeds City Varieties Music Hall *

Mon 18 Scunthorpe Baths Hall *

Tue 19 Hull City Hall +

Thu 21 York Grand Opera House +

Fri 22 Crewe Lyceum Theatre +

Sat 23 Blackpool Opera House +

Mon 25 Glasgow Royal Concert Hall*

Tue 26 Aberdeen Music Hall*

Thu 28 Perth Concert Hall +

March 2019

Fri 01 Edinburgh Queens Hall*

Sat 02 Llandudno Venue Cymru Theatre*

Mon 04 Gateshead Sage 1*

Tue 05 Middlesbrough Town Hall*

Thu 07 Harrogate Royal Hall +

Fri 08 Halifax Victoria Theatre*

Sat 09 Sheffield City Hall +

Mon 11 Kings Lynn Corn Exchange*

Tue 12 Cheltenham Town Hall*

Thu 14 Barnstaple Queens Theatre*

Fri 15 Weston-Super-Mare Playhouse*

Sat 16 Bexhill De La Warr Pavilion +

Mon 18 Southend Cliffs Pavilion*

Tue 19 Cambridge Corn Exchange*

Thu 21 Stevenage Gordon Craig Theatre*

Fri 22 Guildford G Live*

Sat 23 Peterborough The Cresset*

Mon 25 Isle of Wight Shanklin Theatre +

Tue 26 Swindon Wyvern Theatre*

Thu 28 Torquay Princess Theatre

Fri 29 Nottingham Royal Concert Hall*

Sat 30 Lowestoft Marina Theatre*


April 2019

Mon 01 Tunbridge Wells Assembly Halls*

Tue 02 Ipswich Regent*

Thu 04 Reading Hexagon*

Fri 05 Cardiff St David’s Hall*

Sat 06 Bournemouth Pavilion Theatre +

Mon 08 Bath Forum*

Tue 09 Worthing Pavilion Theatre*

Thu 11 Salisbury City Hall*

Fri 12 Swansea The Grand Theatre +

Sat 13 Leicester De Montfort Hall*

Mon 15 Birmingham Symphony Hall*

Tue 16 Wolverhampton Grand Theatre*

Thu 18 Liverpool Philharmonic Hall*

Fri 19 Manchester Bridgewater Hall*

Sat 20 London Royal Albert Hall * +

REVIEW: Bend It Like Beckham – Phoenix Theatre, London

Gurinder Chadha’s adaptation of her own 2002 movie Bend It Like Beckham misses the goalposts more than it hits the back of the net.

Jess Bhamra (Natalie Dew) is an 18 year old football fanatic from Southall, the daughter of strict Punjabi Sikh parents and forbidden from playing the beautiful game. Her skills come to the attention of Jules (Lauren Samuels), who persuades her to try out for semi-pro team the Hounslow Harriers. Cue deception, love, heartbreak and acceptance all dished up to a Bhangra beat.


Running at nearly three hours, there is too much padding and not enough drive in this musical re-working of Gurinder Chadha and husband Paul Mayeda Berges’ movie. It gets off to a woefully slow start and its lacklustre score and hugely stereotypical characterisations do nothing to elevate it above being a reasonably pleasant way to kill three hours.


Howard Goodall’s Indian-infused score is repetitive and lacks the requisite number of big tunes a new musical needs, save the soaring and anthemic ‘Glorious’, there is little that sticks in the memory other than the hugely annoying ‘Girl Perfect’ which lodges in the brain for all the wrong reasons and, like many of the other songs, is repeated incessantly throughout. Charles Hart’s lyrics do little to help, being simplistic rather than sophisticated. One song that does linger in the memory though, is the haunting ‘Heer’, a 500 year old traditional Indian love song.

Lauren Samuels (Jules) and Natalie Dew (Jess) in Bend It Like Beckham The Musical. Photo credit  Ellie Kurttz_0

Natalie Dew is a suitably wide-eyed and innocent heroine and is ably supported by Lauren Samuels as fellow tomboy Jules and the rest of the cast are amiable enough, and of fine voice (especially Preeya Kalidas as Barbie doll sister Pinky and Tony Jayawardena as Mr. Bhamra) however, at times too much mugging goes on: the blame for this though can be laid squarely at the fact that the characters are two-dimensional and much too thinly written. Twilight and Harry Potter actor Jamie Campbell Bower as coach Joe, though competent, barely registers after the event.

Miriam Buether’s two tier, semi-circular, rotating set is rather simplistic and on the cheap looking side, but it is eye-poppingly bright and cheerful. The costumes by Katrina Lindsay didn’t need much work being either football kit, traditional sari or early 2000’s lycra and bling.


The whole endeavour is pleasant enough but nothing more, it is bright, brash, not exactly brain taxing and runs far too long into extra time, and I wonder how much life it will have ultimately.