Jersey Boys

Image from Unsplash


Jersey Boys has been running at the Princess Theatre in Melbourne now for an impressive ten months. I went along to the Princes Theatre in Melbourne to see for myself what all the fuss is about.

Knowing nothing about Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons I wasn’t convinced that the musical about the lives and careers of the four members of the band would be an entirely enjoyable experience. However, with the promise of a free ticket I figured I didn’t have much to lose except perhaps a couple of hours of my life.

I’m pleased to say I was proven wrong. Sitting through the show, it’s easy to see why this production has been packing out Melbourne’s Princess Theatre since March last year. Jersey Boys is a documentary-style musical based on the lives of one of the most successful and influential 1960s rock ‘n roll groups, the Four Seasons. The musical opened on Broadway back in 2005 and since then has taken the theatre world by storm with a North American national tour and a West End version.

The show also won four 2006 Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Actor (John Lloyd Young), Best Featured Actor (Christian Hoff) and Best Lighting Design (Howell Binkley).

The Melbourne version did not disappoint. The story of four regular young guys from New Jersey as they set off on an adventure of fame and fortune is highly engaging, even if you don’t know too much about them. The show covers their ups, their downs, their loves and their losses with comedy and tragedy both playing a part.

The cast was outstanding and really kept up the pace of such an energetic show. There were no weak links at all but I feel I must make a special mention of Ireland’s Bobby Fox who plays Frankie Valli. The way he manages to keep up the enormous range of Frankie Valli’s style of singing for two-and-a-half hours, including huge amounts of falsetto, is noting short of astounding.

I was also genuinely surprised by the number of Four Seasons songs I actually knew without realising it. Oh What A Night, Big Girls Don’t Cry, Walk Like A Man and, of course, Can’t Take My Eyes Of You. The audience is treated to a rousing rendition of the latter song which is a genuine highlight of the show.

All in all this story of four ordinary guys who find fame and the way it effects them makes for a very enjoyable evening.

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