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Spend Spend Spend is a musical set in 1961. Yorkshire housewife Viv Nicholson won a fortune on the pools- her life changed completely. But the money did not bring Viv happiness, it changed her life but as the title suggests - the money was spent immediately! The musical explores the adulation that Viv receives because of her new found wealth but also looks out how money cannot buy you love. Spend Spend Spend is currently on a regional tour. It struggled in the West End to compete with The Lion King and the endless conveyor belt of Lloyd Webber musicals by numbers. This is a real shame because Spend has the power to move the audience beyond belief. Barbara Dickson fought to get the musical tour on the road. Barbara Dickson plays the older Viv Nicholson, the happy-go-lucky Liverpudlian who won the pools only to find that the wealth lead her on the road to drink, heartache and unhappiness. This unflinching tale contains funny lines a plenty but each has a melancholic aftertaste that Lloyd Webber and Disney can only dream of. Barbara Dickson is a revelation as is her young co-star- Rachel Leskovac, each of them displaying Viv's wit and sheer grit and determination in equal measures. The main reason for seeing Spend are the performances. Dickson and Leskovac really do have the power to make you feel like you are walking on air as you leave the theatre. The songs are memorable but not as repetitious as most. The powerful vocals paper over any lyrical shortcomings. The set is minimal, although a conveyor belt carrying all the things Viv bought after her big win is very effective and raises a chuckle and a tear at the same time. As the expensive gifts whizz past you, you realise that they ended up in the hands of the bailiffs! If you are thinking of seeing a musical, don't go for the obvious choices - spend your money on this gem and I can guarantee you won't be asking for your money back. <
br> Spend Spend Spend won Oliver awards and was loved by critics. But it stuggled to find an audience in London. Hopefully, the show will get the audience it deserves on this tour. Want see if this excellent musical is on near you? - check out: www.barbaradickson.com or www.ticketmaster.co.uk The show is in Milton Keynes in Oct and Manchester in Nov.
I went to see this when it first opened and thoroughly enjoyed the whole show. The plot kept my attention - its based on the true life story of Viv Nicholson (well I think thats her name anyway) who won the pools back in the 60's and spent the lot. It made me smile, and cry, and reccomend it to anyone who would listen! The songs were very good - even though I had never heard any of them before I couldn't stop singing them for days after, which has to be a good sign! I hear its closing on 5th August, so catch it while you can!
Spend Spend Spend is a musical with a book and lyrics by Steve Brown and Justin Greene and music by Brown. In 1961, Yorkshire housewife Viv Nicholson won £152,319 in the football pools. When a reporter asked her what she planned to do with her new fortune, she replied, "I'm going to spend, spend, spend!," which is exactly what she did. Her rags to riches to rags again story takes her through five husbands, expensive sports cars, fur coats, and jewelry, a battle with alcohol, and bankruptcy as, unable to cope with her new-found wealth and fame, she rapidly spirals downward. Spend Spend Spend premiered in 1998 at the West Yorkshire Playhouse and won the Barclays Theatre Award for Best Musical of the Year. After a week of previews, the West End production, directed by Jeremy Sams and choreographed by Craig Revel Horwood, opened on October 12, 1999 at the Piccadilly Theatre, where it ran until August 5, 2000. The original cast included Barbara Dickson, Steven Houghton, and Rachel Leskovac.