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Review: Bat Out of Hell is all revved up at the New Theatre Cardiff

Danny Whelan as Ledoux and James Chisholm as Jagwire and the cast of Bat Out Of Hell.Photo Credit: Chris Davis Studio

The ‘Bat Out of Hell – The Musical’ tour has revved and roared into Cardiff this week, and it is a Dead Ringer for an absolute classic.

The ‘Sold Out’ signs are over the doors at the New Theatre Cardiff for most of the week and it is no surprise for a show which is touring the UK before returning to the West End next year.

This is a show with energy and pace, with a number of the most iconic rock ‘n’ roll songs of the 20th Century weaving their way through the storyline.

Alas Jim Steinman & Meat Loaf are no more, but this production more than brings to life their magical music and its unparallel energy.

Jim Steinman developed this musical over many years, based on the trilogy of albums: – Bat Out Of Hell, Bat Out Of Hell II: Back Into Hell and Bat Out Of Hell III: The Monster Is Loose.

The original album sold over 50 million copies worldwide and has one of the longest runs on album charts in history. That is some material to play with.

Glenn Adamson as Strat and Martha Kirby as Raven. Photo Credit: Chris Davis Studio

The storyline is a simple one: Strat, the ‘forever young’ leader of rebellious gang ‘The Lost’ falls in love with Raven, the beautiful daughter of the tyrannical Falco.

It’s Lost Boys meets Peter Pan meets Mad Max with a creative set which cleverly merges the underworld of “The Lost” and Raven’s bedroom on the one stage.

And as the relationship between Strat and Raven develops in spite of Falco’s disapproval, we are taken through the full array of Steinman/Meatloaf anthems such as as I’d Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That),  Two Out Of Three Ain’t Bad, Dead Ringer For Love and of course, Bat Out of Hell.

Glenn Adamson as Strat, Martha Kirby as Raven and the cast of Bat Out Of Hell. Photo Credit: Chris Davis Studio

Glenn Adamson delivered a breath-taking performance as Stratt. His performance of the eponymous Bat Out of Hell will stay long in the memory for many watching.

It was relentless energy, supported by the incredible band led by Musical Director Iestyn Griffiths.

Glenn’s chemistry with Martha Kirby as Raven worked beautifully throughout, and especially during songs such as You Took The Words Right Out of My Mouth and I’d Do Anything For Love….the finale which brought the curtain down on a rousing evening, and a spontaneous standing ovation from the entire theatre.

There is the beautiful sub-plot of the relationship with Raven’s parents Falco and Sloane played by the highly respected and experienced Rob Fowler and Laura Johnson.

Their performance of Paradise By The Dashboard Light oozed humour and chemistry, and epitomised the imaginative and creative choreography of Xena Gusthart. Again, incredible raw energy – and some pink budgie smugglers to boot!

Xena’s choreography really came to the fore in a number of songs, and especially Dead Ringer for Love and You Took The Words Right Out of My Mouth.

Joelle Moses as Zahara, James Chisholm as Jagwire. Photo Credit: Chris Davis Studio

Another mention must go to Joelle Moses as Zahara and James Chisholm as Jagwire. They produced a beautiful performance of Two Out Of Three Ain’t Bad.

The reaction of the sell-out audience said it all.

Let me sleep on it. No chance. This show will leave you revving for hours.

‘Bat Out of Hell – The Musical’ is currently showing at the New Theatre Cardiff until Saturday, 1 October 2022. For more information, click here.