Grease is the word as hit show comes to Birmingham Hippodrome - review with pictures

By Megan Archer | Theatre & Comedy | Published:

Grease the Musical was just electrifyin’ at Birmingham Hippodrome last night.

The cast of the UK and Ireland tour of Grease

Nearly everyone is familiar with the popular 1978 movie starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John - but do they know that Grease was first seen on stage in 1971?

And the musical has come so far in its nearly 50 years - it’s performing in the city until August 24, and is definitely the one that you want.

The theatre show, directed by Nikolai Foster, is a little different from the famous movie - the songs aren’t in the same places and there are a few details changed to make it work for the stage; such as the elimination of the drag racing scene.

But overall - it’s the same, well-loved story, with all the popular tunes you just can’t help but sing along to - such as Greased Lightning, Hopelessly Devoted to You, and Summer Lovin’.

After a whirlwind summer romance, leather-clad greaser Danny and girl-next-door Sandy are unexpectedly reunited when she transfers to Rydell High for senior year.

Dan Partridge as Danny (centre) and the T-Birds

But they’ll need to work to survive the trials and tribulations of teenage life to be able to find true love again.


Dan Patridge was a cheeky, confident Danny Zuko - the leader of the Burger Palace Boys and full of bravado.

Martha Kirby played the wholesome Sandy Dumbrowski - the perfect schoolgirl determined to fit in to wild Rydell.

Dan Partridge as Danny and Martha Kirby as Sandy

Rhianne-Louise McCalulsky was an impressive Betty Rizzo; proud, tough and sarcastic - while Louis Gaunt played a loyal and cocky Kenickie, Danny Zuko’s best friend.


And the Pink Ladies and Burger Palace Boys were colourful, sassy and hilarious - drawing out all the laughs from the crowd.

But it was, naturally, a star appearance from none other than Peter Andre that really got the crowd, quite literally, screaming.

Peter Andre (Teen Angel) at the Grease press launch in Leeds

The Mysterious Girl singer appeared as the all-white, pink wing-clad Teen Angel, who sings Beauty School Drop Out to a despondent Frenchy in the second act.

The moment he stepped foot on the stage the audience became deafening - so much so you could barely hear Peter singing.

The response to his seductive song was amazing - it was impressive that the rest of the cast could still carry on as normal with the noise erupting from the crowd.

Louis Gaunt as Kenickie (centre)

The star, who recently appeared on Strictly Come Dancing, performs on all nights of the show except for 19, 20, 23 and 24 August - which will see television and radio star Ore Oduba step into the role.

Whizz back to 1959 and get lost in the world of vanilla milkshakes, leather jackets and bubblegum pink hair.

Grease is one of the musicals that just leaves you wanting more.

It runs until Saturday, August 24.

Megan Archer

By Megan Archer
Chief Reporter - @MeganA_Star

Chief Reporter with the Express & Star. Give me a call on 01902 319363 or email


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