The Lady Boys of Bangkok
For some glitzy fast-paced feel-good fun catch the Greatest Showgirls Tour, in Sussex till early June.
We’ve all done it – a bit of private karaoke into our hairbrushes to our favourite power ballads. But here’s a show that takes the fun to a whole new level of lypsynching glamour.
My sister-in-law and I finally caught the hugely popular Lady Boys of Bangkok – currently celebrating their 21st birthday and on Hove Lawns until 2 June, before heading to Bognor with The Greatest Showgirls Tour.
Having booked for a 6pm Sunday slot I wasn’t sure if the mood would really take off – it was still light outside, I was still sober… but I couldn’t have been more wrong.
With little in the way of compering it was straight into the action, and the crowd, which included the odd hen group, all seated at round cabaret-style tables, soon got into the party mood.
It’s a fast paced show with slick choreography smoothing the segues from one hit to another. Many tracks were from recent years, with a few dips back as far as 70s. Beyonce, Kylie, Tina Turner, Freddie Mercury and Witney (even, surprisingly, the Bay City Rollers) all got the Lady Boys treatment and, as the tour name suggests, there’s was a bit of Greatest Showman besides.
It didn’t take long to get us all clapping and singing along, waving our arms, in some cases dancing about, while the Ladyboys strutted about the stage or got up on podiums and at one point even the bar.
The feel-good song and dance sequences were peppered with some comic skits – from carpool karaoke to some blindfold lap-dancing. It’s not a show for the easily offended and we did a lot of nervous avoiding of eye contact as acts swept the room looking for willing victims up for some onstage audience participation.
By contrast there was also the odd poignant song acknowledging that gender bending, in performance and everyday life, isn’t always met with such approval.
With what seemed like a zillion costume and wig changes throughout, when it came to the curtain call I was amazed not to see a cast of around 50!
The show really lifted my mood after what had been a trying day and everyone came out in good spirits. There was even an impromptu sing-along in the loos afterwards!
It’s a fun night out, great if you’ve a birthday or other get-together to celebrate with friends (bag a Platinum table if you want to be right down the front). Expect to come away with feel-good songs on the brain, a smile on your face and some serious envy of those ladyboys’ long fishnet-clad legs.
The Lady Boys of Bangkok Greatest Showgirls Tour is at the specially erected Sabai Pavilion on Hove Lawns daily until 2 June with double performances on some dates. It moves on to Bognor for a 4 June show. ladyboysofbangkok.co.uk/tour