A keen theatre lover and performer myself, never has a Monday night show been performed with such gusto by a cast led by ex-Hearsay singer Noel Sullivan and X Factor's Brenda Edwards, and indeed, never has a typically bargain priced night, boasted such a packed house.
All 2,000 seats (plus standing room) were filled with an eclectic mix of celebrity back sides, original cast members (no pressure then), journalists, theatre land big wigs, the writer and director of the hit show, comedian Ben Elton, AND, as the opening 'titles' informed us baying crowd, deceased Queen frontman, Freddie Mercury's entire family!
Having seen this show a few times (*cough* err eight...), I was expecting a belter of a show, however every credit to the cast and musicians; this was a show and a half. The extra pressure and prestige of the event gave everyone that added edge and to end the show with its 'surprise' appearance from the two remaining Queen members, got even the most reserved punters off their chairs, screaming and waving their glosticks with unashamed abandon. Even Bill Odie, (yes, Bill Odie my friends), who was enjoying a snooze for most of the second half (I know this as he was sat right next to me jostling my elbow off the arm rest), leapt up to join in with anthem 'Bohemian Rhapsody'. Go Bill!
I'd challenge anyone to not be reduced to sweating screaming banshee status upon seeing Brian May and Roger Taylor raise up through the floor of the stage, doing what they do best. It was a terrific night, a terrific performance and if you've not seen We Will Rock You yet, I strongly urge you to do so. Special mention to Noel Sullivan; pigeon-holed as a slightly-less-successful Hearsay member no more, in this role he has certainly found his vocation and has emerged from a manufactured pop group into a truly incredible singer, a gifted actor and dare I say it... a little bit dishy. Who knew?
From one stage to another now as this week I've been channelling my inner 'wizard' and popped down to see what all the fuss was about at the Warner Brothers Harry Potter Studio Tour in Leavesdon, Herts.
Having heard all the backstage stories from my brother who played a Death Eater in the last two Harry Potter movies, I was looking forward to seeing all the best bits of the franchise in one place.
Exciting from the off, after being shown a nostalgic film taking us through what we're about to experience by the film's biggest stars, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint, thanks to the simple, yet very effective, raising of the cinema screen, the entrance to the magical world of Harry Potter is revealed.
For the next three hours, one is transported into pure Harry Potter ecstasy. Dumbeldore's office, the Gryffindor Dormitory, costumes, props, the prosthetic art studio where you see the 'real' Dobby the house elf, and goblin 'Griphook's' mask, a scarily massive tarantula hanging precariously from the ceiling, and you can even buy the famous tipple of choice 'Butter Beer'. A 'secret formula' that's so sweet and sugary it'll have you dialling for your dentist in a bid to replace the stripped enamel on your teeth, and at £3 a pop I'd suggest one between two is more than adequate.
However, they're on to a winner as you can't visit Harry Potter without trying its signature beverage. I may have been bouncing off the ceiling for weeks due to the concentrated sugar high but I'd have been miffed if I'd passed the vendors by. 'When in Rome', that's what I say.
With a chance to 'fly on a broomstick' (be prepared to queue), and the piece de resistance that is 'Diagon Alley' (I actually did a stupid little 'excited kid' dance'), this excellent idea to turn the old sets into a money-making attraction is a no-brainer, and is a win win all round. They might be stretching it slightly by billing it as 'Warner Brothers Studio Tour London', but it doesn't matter, wherever you're travelling from, this is the actual place the multi-billion pound franchise was filmed, and it's well worth the trek up the A41 to Watford to experience it.
TV for this week and a particularly amusing edition of Alan Carr's Chatty Man, thanks largely to telly duo 'Pip' Schofield and Holly Willoughby. Secrets of the CBBC broom cupboard and BBC dressing rooms all fuelled by a vast quantity of tequila from Alan's famous drinks cabinet made for hilarious viewing.
And having been snubbed by the aforesaid BBC, Sacha Baron Cohen's latest creation and star of new movie The Dictator, General Aladeen took to the sofa with his bevy of beauties. Famed for
not breaking character, he perhaps wants to have a word with one of his 'girls'. Clearly not getting the memo from her boss, one leggy beauty clearly fancied some of the limelight herself and seemed incapable of retaining the stony glare the rest of her comrades had adopted flawlessly.
To be honest though, being subjected to the barrage of ridicule and suggestive comments from Alan and Co, the best actress in the world would have struggled to remain smirk-free. And that's all folks for another year as Britain's Got Talent crowned its new winners, Ashleigh and Pudsey.
Having professed that he's 'had a few dogs in his time', fortunately Ashleigh is a looker, Simon's newest crush is on her lovable pooch. Set to make millions this year, a refreshing act to win the show in its umpteenth year and its variety – hurray!
By far the best final this show has had in a long time. Rival show The Voice may have all 4 of their coaches singing polished numbers to represent their show, BGT gets judge David Walliams as a Show Bear performing the very UN-polished camp ditty 'We're Sailor Men' – I know which one I'd rather have though purely for the laugh it induced, a silver polyester clad Walliams any day.
The majority of acts will no doubt go on to big things. The Mend, Jonathon and Charlotte, Only Boys Aloud... the race is on as to who will be the first to release the obligatory cover album.
OK, these shows, including The Voice, X Factor etc, take a significant amount of flack for their level of credibility within the industry, but if Saturday's final is an indication of the sheer opportunity that's available to a lot of talented individuals by the networks that would otherwise never get the chance to be seen by the masses, I say why the heck not?
Congratualtions to Amanda Holden for going to the BGT final as Tallulah from Bugsey Malone and will.i.am channelling the Bagpuss 'Professsor Yaffle' look on The Voice.