LSMedia Rating: *****
So a man walks into a bar with a towel. DON’T PANIC! This can only mean one thing… the hitchhikers are in town. The vociferous crowds gather in throngs equipped with their intergalactic armory at the ready. The very first broadcast of the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy may well have housed itself in a niche comedy slot on the BBC Radio 4 but it’s allure has sure expanded to a rather large following whom clearly had no qualms in articulating this through their attire and rowdy shout outs throughout last night’s live performance at the Liverpool Empire Theatre.
And what a treat, the original radio series cast members on stage, in front of our very eyes, after many many light years. What could be better? Well, to begin the show with a vintage version of Pink Floyd’s One of these Days of course. The band led the way with an atmospheric inauguration before our cultural legends graced us with their presence. Yes, cultural legends whose enduring set of voices and identity made way for a gargantuan amount of novelty tic tac that many of us, are often guilty of actually procuring.
Unfortunately Roger McGough, an addition to the cast as The Guide, fell short of the mark and made a few blunders, surprisingly so, since he was reading straight from the script. Alas, this was a minor fault with the performance and could be overlooked and certainly overpowered by the ingenious and effective visuals that accompanied the ever-hilarious words of Douglas Adams. The anticipation of not really knowing what to expect from “watching” a radio show live, was immediately adjudicated to pure delight. From Simon Jones as the beloved Arthur Dent, striding upon stage in his chequered dressing gown to the brilliantly designed Colin the Robot with an equally brilliant dance half way into the performance; one was thoroughly entertained by the enactment. The entire cast made a great effort to tell the story visually whilst remaining behind their mics as if they were still recording all those years ago in a studio, which unexpectedly, worked rather well.
Whether you’re an avid aficionado or merely one for comic value then this show is for you. Highly amusing and not to be missed.
Until Tuesday 19th June.