The Fawlty Towers Dining Experience

For those of you Americans reading this, you may be wondering what exactly Fawlty Towers is? Well, it’s one of the most hilarious British sitcoms from the 70s. If you’re a fan of British humour – go watch it, and even if you’re not – still go watch it. The show takes place in a hotel and features Basil, the inept hotel manager, his bossy wife Sybil and Manuel, the funniest Spanish water that has a knack for ruining everything Basil tries to do right.

Well, I was so intrigued by the show and after spending 2.5 years here in the UK, I decided it was time to experience the Fawlty Towers Dining experience for myself! Currently playing at the Amba Hotel in Charring Cross and the Kingsway Hotel in Covent Garden, the show is literally everything you will remember from the hit BBC sitcom rolled into a two hour sit down meal, where the audience are used as props and the food is too…

The performance features the three main characters, Basil, Sybil and the hilarious Manuel – all of whom were spectacular and looked so similar to the original cast.

For those of you that know Fawlty Towers well, expect to see the funniest scenes played out from the original show, including Manuel and Basil the Rat, Basil trying to get Manuel to bet on a horse, the scene where the Americans come to town with the Waldorf Salad, and the inevitable build up to that German scene where Basil goes insane….

Having not watched the show loads before we went to the experience, I still found it to be incredibly humorous and a great laugh all throughout dinner, even when Manuel accidentally chucked me on the floor in front of everyone!

You can’t help but laugh throughout the entire show…

On to the food… Well, truth be told, the food wasn’t as great as the performance was but you don’t come for the mind-blowing food, you come for a really fun evening out. Bread rolls used as props were flung across the room by Manuel, pumpkin soup that arrived later than expected…

Roast Chicken with veggies and a potato..

And Black Forest Gateaux Cake …. I think we were all a little disappointed to see no Waldorf salad but that’s neither here no there!

I personally loved all the jokes and how they got the crowd really involved and immersed in the entire experience. It was a really fun evening full of surprises and the script (they say) is different each time. The characters were all so spot on and overall, it was a very unique night out and something a little bit different! The Fawlty Towers Dining Experience would make for an excellent gift for a relative and would also be great fun to do as a group.

Have you been to the Fawlty Towers Dining Experience yet? What did you think?

Book now! 

I was a guest of the Fawlty Towers Dining Experience, but all opinions are my own, and I wouldn’t trade this exceptionally funny night for anything.

 

Aladdin The Musical

Aladdin was my favourite Disney film growing up. When I was four years old, I had an Aladdin-themed room, blue Jasmine pyjamas, gold Jasmine shoes, and I even had an Aladdin-themed birthday, cake and all. It’s safe to say that I was obsessed with the movie and was absolutely thrilled when I found out the cartoon was going to come alive on stage in London’s West End! We snapped up tickets to the pre-opening week at the beginning of June and I was so excited to see it I could hardly wait. What we saw, exceeded any previously conceived notions and it was such a special experience that brought me back to my Jasmine-pyjama wearing days.

Aladdin_Prince Edward Theatre. Photographer Deen van Meer. © Disney (2)Aladdin the Musical took place at the Prince Edward Theatre in Soho. We took our seats in the beautiful Victorian theatre and I was grinning from ear to ear as soon as the show started. The opening scenes were outstanding and re-created the chase scene from the original cartoon so well in the market place in Agrabar so well. I loved how they used the same soundtrack as the film, with some original songs thrown in as well.

Aladdin Prince Edward Theatre Dean John-Wilson (Aladdin) Photographer Deen van Meer © DisneyOne of my favourite scenes was when Aladdin is in the Cave of Wonders to find the lamp. The set design was astonishing, with intricate gold structures and beading. I had never seen such a grand scene before in a musical. It was a spectacle that needs to be seen to be believed! The best part was yet to come though…

Aladdin Prince Edward Theatre Trevor Dion Nicholas (Genie) Photographer Deen van Meer © DisneyTrevor Dion Nicholas, who they brought over from the Broadway show in NYC, was absolutely fantastic as Genie. He brought the show to life and added a lot of humour to every scene he was in. The “Friend Like Me” scene was extravagant, magnificent and he was show-stoppingly fabulous. Multiple outfit changes, incredible singing and dancing made for a jaw-dropping sequence that ended in an well-deserved standing ovation from the crowd. There was so much personality, passion and enthusiasm that he brought to the show and I hope he wins an award for his outstanding performance.

Aladdin_Prince Edward Theatre_Jade Ewen (Jasmine) and company_Photographer Deen van Meer. © Disney

Aladdin Prince Edward Theatre Jade Ewen (Jasmine) Photographer Deen van Meer © DisneyJasmine, played by Jade Ewen, was beautiful and I personally thought sh was such a great fit to play the princess. She looked just like Jasmine and sounded exactly as she did in the film. She and Aladdin had great chemistry and worked so well as a couple throughout the film.

Aladdin Prince Edward Theatre Dean John-Wilson (Aladdin) and Jade Ewen (Jasmine) Photographer Deen van Meer © Disney

Now, I am going to be very corny and say that hearing “A Whole New World” brought to life on stage, was a dream come true for me. I have nothing more to say, other than I loved every single second of the scene and sang along with the cast. The production team did such a great job at bringing the magic carpet to life as Aladdin and Jasmine soared through the stage.

Aladdin Prince Edward Theatre Photographer Deen van Meer © Disney 3All of the costumes were vibrant and sparkly and I loved that bright colours were used throughout the entire show. The flowing material looked stunning whilst the cast were dancing on stage. I must also note that Jafar and Lago were an incredible duo, both sinister and hilarious. The two characters rounded out what was an all around fantastic show. The only two characters that I missed were Abu and Raja the Tiger, but the producers did a great job and incorporating other characters to make up for them.

Aladdin Prince Edward Theatre Jade Ewen (Jasmine) and Dean John-Wilson (Aladdin) Photographer Deen van Meer © Disney 2Between the costumes, the singing, dancing, magnificent set design, Genie’s outstanding performance and having the chance to see my childhood favourite movie come to live on screen, it was such a special experience and one I won’t soon forget! If you get the chance to see Aladdin, I can’t recommend it enough. It’s perfect for all ages and would be a really fun date night as well. Jump on the bandwagon and buy your tickets before they all go! The show is on until February 2017, so book your tickets before it’s too late! It’s a show worth seeing in the West End.

Here’s a little teaser of what you can expect!

Aladdin the Musical | Prince Edward Theatre | 28 Old Compton St | London | W1D 4HS | Tickets 

PS – you can listen to the soundtrack from the musical on Spotify! (It’s been on repeat for me).

Bend It Like Beckham: The Musical

Bend It Like Beckham has always been a favourite movie of mine since I was younger. My sisters and I used to watch it together growing up and when I found out it was coming to London’s West End – I had to see it. I read so many wonderful reviews about the show in the lead up to seeing it and I’ve got to say I absolutely loved it. I’ve never been a huge theatre person, with that said – I thought it was phenomenal and I would definitely go back to see it again and am keen to see more West End shows.

Hounslow Harriers in Bend It Like Beckham The Musical. Photo credit Ellie Kurttz

For those of you who haven’t seen the movie, here’s the lowdown: Jess Bhamra comes from a really strict Indian family and isn’t allowed to play football on an organised team. She is scouted one day by Jules Paxton playing in the park and she gets recruited to play with the Hounslow Harriers. She starts to secretly play on the team and figures out how to keep it from her parents. While she’s playing on the team, she starts to develop feelings for her coach, Joe.  You’ll have to watch the movie or go see the musical to see how the rest of the story unfolds…

Bend It Like Beckham The Musical, Photo by Ellie Kurttz

One of the great aspects of the musical adaptation is that you don’t have to have already seen the film, or be a football fanatic to enjoy it. The dancing and singing were spectacular (I am downloading the soundtrack), the cast were hilarious and it was a truly light-hearted, feel good show.

Bend It Like Beckham The Musical. Photo Ellie Kurttz

Pinky (Jess’s sister) was played by Preeya Kalidas, who was actually in the original movie. She was outstanding. The Bhangra dance scenes were my favourite and I loved the colourful costumes.

Bend It Like Beckham The Musical, Photo Ellie Kurttz

Bend It Like Beckham The Musical, Photo by Ellie Kurttz

Hounslow Harriers in Bend It Like Beckham The Musical Photo credit Ellie Kurttz

Hounslow Harriers in Bend It Like Beckham The Musical. Photo credit Ellie Kurttz

The show was beautifully orchestrated and it was such a great celebration of the movie. There was some quintessentially British humour thrown into the mix and it was an overall uplifting experience. I don’t have enough fantastic things to say about it. The show is playing at the Phoenix Theatre until February 2016 and you can book tickets online by clicking here: http://benditlikebeckhamthemusical.co.uk/

All photos were taken by Ellie Kurttz c/o Premier PR.