Audiences at Liverpool’s Empire Theatre have been spellbound by the touring production of Ghost the musical. Based on the 1990 academy award winning movie, Ghost tells the story of Sam Wheat (played by Stewart Clarke) and Molly Jensen (played by Rebecca Trehearn). Sam is murdered after being attacked on his way back to his apartment in Brooklyn, New York. Sam then becomes trapped between this world and the next as he battles to protect Molly who is in danger. He turns to medium, Oda Mae Brown to help him get in touch with Molly to warn her.
This production sees strong vocal performances from all the leading characters but it is the vibrant Oda Mae brown (played by Wendy Mae Brown) with her comedic one liners and larger than life performance that stole the show. The music, composed by Dave Stewart, includes everything you look for in a musical, from the upbeat chorus numbers such as ‘You Gotta Let Go’ and ‘I’m Outta Here’ to the heart warming classic ‘Unchained Melody’ which acts as the shows central musical motif.
The show opens revealing a computerized scene projecting a video of New York traffic which helped to situate the audience in the heart of the action as it captures the bustling atmosphere of the big apple. These projections continue throughout the show illustrating the chaotic lives of the business people of Wall street and even the New York subway. The special effects used throughout Ghost were mesmerizing as objects and even certain characters levitated before our very eyes. The ghost characters were also able to move through doors using clever visual effects. The effective use of lighting helped to distinguish the living characters from the dead, as the ghosts are continually illuminated by a pale blue spotlight.
The expert use of these special effects continually captures the hearts and the imaginations of audiences and it is what sets Ghost apart from any other musical you will see on or off the west end. Ghost has definitely been one of the most visually spectacular shows to ever arrive at the Empire Theatre.