Menier Chocolate Factory


25 Nov 2017 - 03 Mar 2018

Pro reviewers rating
13 reviews

2.7 out of 5.0
Peer reviewers rating
1 reviews

4.0 out of 5.0

P T Barnum, the Greatest Showman on Earth, combined razzle-dazzle with charm and brass to sell “humbug” to cheering crowds.

This musical portrait of the nineteenth century’s greatest showbiz legend is a colourful, dynamic spectacle full of circus, side-show legends and heart.


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“Inventive set... Scenes between husband and wife are often touching while providing much of the evening's comedy... A good time.”

Veronica Lee (Daily Mail, ES, Arts Desk)

“Plenty to enjoy as pure spectacle... The real star is the ensemble... The movement... is terrific, fluent and startling.”

Libby Purves (TheatreCat, Times)

“Turns the pokey space into an evocative big top... In casting... Brigstocke... he undoes all the magic he has created.”

Sarah Crompton (What's On Stage, Guardian)

“A small-scale version of the American musical that suffers from a want of wonder and showmanship... Sadly lacking in magic.”

Natasha Tripney (The Stage, Time Out)

“Likeable, energetic.. much to enjoy on the level of pure spectacle... striking production... You believe in their marriage.”

Paul Taylor (The Independent)

“Moments when everything comes together... Often feels like a thinly disguised vehicle for watchable circus acts.”

Other newspaper reviewers

“Brigstocke has the required warmth in abundance... His singing voice is sweet but not strong... Nor is he terribly physical.”

Ian Shuttleworth (Financial Times)

“Barnum is in a league of its own in terms of challenge... Brigstocke gamely dives in at the deep end and belly-flops. ”

Dominic Cavendish (The Telegraph)

“This exuberant and at times frantic Eighties musical lives or dies by the quality of its leading man... Brigstocke: miscast.”

Henry Hitchings (Evening Standard)

“In stripping back some of the spectacle... Greenberg's production reveals the work's weaknesses... Bizarre miscasting.”

Marianka Swain (Broadway World, Arts Desk)

“A spectacle... lacking in razzle dazzle.”

Ann Treneman (Times)

“Agonisingly negligible... Propped up by Pitt-Pulford, who brings humour, charisma, depth and real singing chops. ”

Andrzej Lukowski (Time Out)

“Bramble’s script is thin... Merry but undistinguished lyrics... A whirligig of activity... Impressive and jolly.”

Susannah Clapp (The Observer)

Reviews (0)    

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