2:56 PM March 2, 2022
Everyone’s talking about West End hit Jamie came to the Norwich Theater Royal on his UK tour and it was the escape everyone needed.
The show was originally supposed to arrive in the city in June 2020, but due to the pandemic, it was delayed by almost two years.
It was well worth the wait and from start to finish it was a fabulous celebration of individuality and friendship, filled with sass and glitz.
It’s based on a true story, with a film adaptation coming out in 2021, and follows schoolboy Jamie New from Sheffield who dreams of being a drag queen.
He decides to make the ultimate statement and go to prom in a dress, though his decision to break boundaries doesn’t sit well with everyone.
Layton Williams, best known for playing Stephen in Jack Whitehall’s Bad Education, was born to play the lead role.
He held the audience in the palm of his polished hand with a quick wit and his impressive ability to walk perfectly in six-inch heels.
Amy Ellen Richardson as her mother Margaret was her ultimate cheerleader and had a remarkable voice, especially on the ballad He’s My Boy.
His best friend Ray (Sasha Latoya) provided great comedy moments and EastEnders legend Shane Richie brought his natural charisma to the role of Hugo and drag alter ego Loco Chanelle.
But it was very much an ensemble piece, with drag queens and all of Jamie’s classmates creating a really inclusive and diverse show.
It was fantastic to see two of the characters wear hijabs and you saw Pritti (Sharan Phull) also go on a journey of self-acceptance.
George Sampson, who won Britain’s Got Talent in 2008, played the bully Dean and he really is as talented an actor as he is a dancer.
Although much to the delight of the audience, he still released a few breakdance moves.
The set was very clever as a perfectly deployed classroom backdrop in Jamie’s house.
Theaters should be safe and welcoming spaces for all and that was no more true than for this show.
There were people of all ages and drag queens in the audience, everyone coming together for an evening of pure joy.
Everyone’s talking about Jamie until March 5, book your tickets at norwichtheatre.org