London has hosted the long-awaited World Premiere of Jim Steinman’s Bat Out of Hell The Musical, and it’s like nothing London has seen before. The home of The English National Opera, The London Coliseum, certainly hasn’t – it’s been transformed in to a futuristic Manhattan with a stage spilling out into the audience and bursting at the seams with theatrical spectacle. Imagine the passion and energy of We Will Rock You, then multiply it by ten and you’re somewhere close to Bat Out of Hell.
All too often the ‘juke-box musical’ format tries too hard to shoehorn some kind of plot around the untouched well-established songs. With Bat Out of Hell The Musical the plot is fairly predictable and rather thin, but no one cares. The audience are just revelling in all its wonderment. Those classic songs for a start, instead of being rolled out one by one in concert fashion, they are carefully placed and cleverly blended to the situation.
As Strat, Andrew Polec is a Rockstar, he sounds and looks like he should be performing to sold out arena crowds as the frontman of the hottest band in town. Whether belting out the classics like ‘Bat Out of Hell’ or caressing some of the more tender numbers; the way he moves, the way he sings, his entire performance, is utterly electric.
But, as an audience we are doubly blessed, because performing right alongside the super talented Andrew Polec, is the equally talented Christina Bennington as Raven. Giving one of the most haunting and beautiful renditions of ‘It’s All Coming Back To Me Now’ that I have ever heard.