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Spice Girls 'Viva Forever' musical opens to terrible reviews: Round-up

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The Spice Girls musical opened at London's Piccadilly Theatre with a glitzy opening night yesterday, attended by writer Jennifer Saunders and all five members of the Girl Power pop group.

However, Posh, Baby, Scary, Sporty and Ginger probably won't want to pick up a paper this morning to read the first reviews of their show, because nearly all have been scathing (only a five-line review in The Sun offered any real positives).

Digital Spy has rounded up the critics' verdicts on the new West End show.

Melanie Brown, Geri Halliwell, Emma Bunton and Melanie Chisholm arrive at the press night of Viva andForever!, a new musical based on the songs of the Spice Girls.

© PA Images / Matt Crossick/Empics Entertainment



The Guardian
"But the real problem is the songs. For one thing, there aren't enough memorable hits in a career that lasted for three albums to support two hours of theatre. In fairness, the Spice Girls had a handful of decent songs - 'Stop' and 'Say You'll Be There' among them – but elsewhere they're forced to rely on pretty vapourous album tracks such as 'Right Back At Ya' and, at one panic-inducing moment, delve into the solo oeuvre of Geri Halliwell."

The Telegraph
"I'll tell you what I wanted, what I really, really wanted – I wanted this terrible show to stop... this is a fatuous show with nothing fresh to say about popular culture and our fixation with fame. If you love the Spice Girls stay at home and listen to their greatest hits."

Daily Mail
"What a disappointment. The Spice Girls were fun, full of beans, a greater force for feminism than Harriet Harman or even Nick Clegg. They were can-do, can-just-about-sing. What they lacked in the harmony department, they made up for with vim, va-voom and hip-clingy Union Jack frocks. So how come this new musical featuring the group's songs is so drudgy, so sour and focused on failure?"

Melanie Brown, Melanie Chisholm, Geri Halliwell, Emma Bunton and Victoria Beckham with the cast during the press night of Viva Forever at the Piccadilly Theatre, Denman Street, London.

© PA Images



The Independent
"Not only does Jennifer Saunders's script rarely give you that necessary gleeful sense of expectancy about where the songs are going to be shoe-horned in, but it's embarrassingly derivative of Mamma Mia! and looks way past its sell-by date in its utterly surprise-free satiric swipe at X Factor."

Huffington Post
"These are songs for dancefloors, not the aircraft hanger space of what amounted to a big-budget school production, without a hairbrush to sing into in sight."

Evening Standard
"When 'Spice Up Your Life' is performed, it's a genuinely buzzy moment. But there aren't enough really potent songs to make this a compelling jukebox musical. The first half is limp, the second better yet hardly electrifying."

Melanie Brown aka Mel B, Geri Halliwell, Emma Bunton, Melanie Chisholm aka Mel C
VIVA Forever Spice Girls the Musical held at the Piccadilly Theatre- Arrivals
London, England - 11.12.12
Mandatory Credit: Lia Toby/WENN.com

© WENN / Lia Toby



The Mirror
"You would think it would be easy to strap the songs of one of the biggest girl groups in recent history to an exuberant story of girl power to create a worldwide money-making machine. But you would be wrong... Viva Forever? More like clapped-out Vauxhall Viva, five careless owners with far too many miles on the clock."

The Sun
"As a true fan, I was worried that the jukebox musical formula might not work with their songs but Jennifer Saunders has done a great job with the script and the show flows really well. Now that the hits have been immortalised in this way, I hope that generations of little girls to come will love them as much as I did."

Digital Spy
"The Spice Girls were bold, brassy, sexy and spray-painted with colour - but this wasn't. Perhaps it's our fault for craving an all-singing, all-disco-dancing throwback to the '90s. We wanted to leave the theatre with our eyeballs collaged in sequins, feeling nauseous due to Baby's lollipop over-consumption, tattooed in Girl Power and flashing our bras - but we didn't."

Spice Girls 'Viva Forever' - Launch pictures:

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