Letitia Dean gets full marks as hit movie adaptation arrives in Hammersmith
HIGH SCHOOL Musical starts its long-awaited run in London this weekend, complete with a live orchestra, a huge cast including Letitia Dean from EastEnders and two new songs that even the block-busting movies didn't have.
When High School Musical hit our screens a couple of years back, a whole generation of British kids were introduced to the strange world of American education, with its titanic battles between Jocks and Nerds and the students' odd habit of breaking into song at the least excuse.
Such was the success of its Romeo and Juliet formula that Disney, the film's backers, rushed out High School Musical 2 a year later. Still riding the wave, they're making a third movie as well as this stage version. If anything, the Hammersmith Apollo show has still more youthful vim and verve than the film and is guaranteed to get audiences singing along, laughing and shedding a tear or three.
Letitia Dean, as Ms Darbus, adds some fame-glamour to the proceedings and she's great, but most of all its about the supremely catchy songs, as proud/long-suffering parents will already know.
High School Musical Live on Stage is on for two months over the summer, from 28 June until 31 August.