Review: The Bodyguard at Manchester Palace Theatre

Think the Bodyguard, think Whitney Houston.

It was the 1992 movie that sent the late, great, singer’s career stratospheric and saw a whole generation getting in touch with their emotions and trying to reach unattainable high notes in the shower while swooning over Kevin Costner.

Now The Bodyguard is on stage touring the UK and the story of the star who fell in love with her security man is available for new generations and reprised for all the fans from the first time round.

Like any stage production, this is an adaptation so don’t expect exactly the same storyline.

But safe to say this hits all the high notes and main story elements and is a magical, emotional experience with drama, goodies, baddies, humour and showcases some quite remarkable talent from its stars including former X Factor winner (2008) and owner of the most remarkable pair of lungs – Alexandra Burke.

I didn’t know quite what to expect from this talented lady but she commands the stage entirely as troubled star Rachel Marron looking beautiful and powerful, rendering the audience silent with her remarkable voice and entirely convinced with her American accent.

After one number you quite forget Whitney – here 26-year-old Alexandra takes the Hollywood star role and makes it her own in a younger even more diva-esque manner. Wow.

She put her album on hold for this tour and says it is her ‘dream come true’ and watching her you can understand why.

There are ooohs, aaahs and cheese aplenty through this well paced show – and Alexandra’s talent is just the start.

There are haunting, memorable, performances from Melissa James as Rachel’s conflicted and professionally frustrated sister Nicki, plus a crowd-pleasing turn by Rachel’s son Fletcher.

Stuart Reid as Frank Farmer approaches his role with a level of humour that sits perfectly on the stage, with a special mention for his out of tune karaoke.

The entire cast pulls together some magical ensemble moments and use of lighting and moving staging gives this show that magical, Hollywood-esque big production feel that is required to suspend disbelief and propel audiences away from their everyday lives for a few hours.

Where do broken hearts go?

We are none the wiser – but we seriously enjoy the journey of trying to find out during this show.

And that final number – Alexandra says she can’t think about it or say the title or she cries – you probably will too.

Fantastic production, try and catch it at Manchester’s Palace theatre.