Spen Amateurs ride into town hall with rousing performance

Richard Shingleton and Lauren Middleton in Carousel.
Richard Shingleton and Lauren Middleton in Carousel.

Spenborough Amateurs have done it again, as their production of Carousel rode into Cleckheaton town hall.

The Rogers and Hammerstein musical was given a rousing choral treatment by the group, with classic songs June is Bustin’ Out All Over and You’ll Never Walk Alone among the highlights during the tuneful two-hour show.

The show was Rogers and Hammerstein’s second musical, and followed on the success of Oklahoma, which is set in 1890s Maine, USA. It revolves around the attempts of best friends Julie Jordan and Carrie Pipperage to find husbands. Both have differing levels of success, as Julie weds bad-boy Billy Bigalow while Carrie ties the knot with fishing magnate Enoch Snow.

The entire cast delivered an energetic and fresh take on the classic, but the highlights of the performance were the youthful performances of Richard Shingleton and Lauren Middleton as Mr and Mrs Billy Bigalow. The two performed with believably heartfelt performances, which encompassed themes of loss, abuse and ultimate redemption in accepting one’s responsibilities.

Another mention must be made for Abbie Sampson who, despite being only 15, appeared to own the stage at times, with a powerful and vociferous performance as Carrie Pipperidge.

The society’s next performance will be the Vicar of Dibley, which will take place in May next year.