Crazy For You
Nomination - Best Actor in a Musical (BATS) - Kevin Rawcliffe
2nd - 7th November 2009
Photographs by John Tustin
Production Officials
Director Nora Howcroft
Musical Director David Wall
Choreographer Lara Crombie
Bobby Child Kevin Rawcliffe
Polly Baker Teresa Harper
Bela Zangler Mike Bailey
Lank Hawkins Alan Hitchen
Everett Baker Don Howcroft
Irene Roth Louise Steggals
Eugene Foder John McCrae
Patricia Foder Jane Bickerstaffe
Mother Joyce Walters
Perkins David Witt
Tess Vicky Muir
Patsy Jess Barnett
Mitzi Tricia Shorten
Follies Girls
Laurenne Bailey, Sarah Booth, Carole Brooks, Lara Crombie, Nicola Mackay, Helen McGrath, Lucy Tyrer
Cowboys of Deadrock
Bert Ashton, Colin Dean, Tom Golley, Josh Horn, Dave McGreavy, Edward Munday, David Witt
Ladies of Deadrock
Barbara Martin, Mary Pycroft, Gill Pollitt, Maria Sharrocks, Janet Smith
  • Bobby and Polly Bobby and Polly
  • Bela Zangler Bela Zangler
  • Bela and Follies Girls Polly, Bobby and the Follies Girls
  • Polly and Bobby Polly and Bobby
  • Follies Girls Follies Girls
  • Bobby and Bela Bobby and Bela (or Bela and Bobby!)
  • Follies Girl and Bobby Follies Girl and Bobby
  • Ladies of Deadrock Ladies and Gentlemen of Deadrock
  • Polly and Bobby Polly and Bobby
  • Cowboys of Deadrock Cowboys of Deadrock
  • Lank and Everett Lank and Everett
  • Polly Polly
  • Mother Mother
  • Polly, Patricia and Eugene with the Follies Girls Polly, Patricia and Eugene with the Follies Girls
  • Ladies of Deadrock Ladies of Deadrock

  • Bolton News Review
  • NODA North West Review
I got my shoes reheeled yesterday but feared that a second trip to the cobblers may be in order after sitting through Walmsley Church AODS’s current musical offering. For I was tapping my foot like a man possessed as the cast performed an infectious version of the Gershwin-fuelled musical. What they lacked in polished perfection, they made up for with exuberance, enthusiasm and some cracking renditions of the songs which helped this production to Tony Award Success in 1992.

Kevin Rawcliffe excelled as love-struck wannabe star Bobby Child and in the scenes when his character took on the role of theatre supremo, Bela Zangle. Cue wonderfully over-the-top German accent. The deliberately overly British couple, Patricia and Eugene Foder, played by Jane Bickerstaffe and John McCrae, also deserve note.

The story follows Bobby as he is sent to Nevada by his mother and head of the family’s banking corporation to close a local theatre. There he falls in love with its owner, Polly Baker (Teresa Harper) and bids to put on a show to save it. Baker puts in some strong solo vocal performances to justify her role — and ends up in the arms of her suitor.

Another top offering from Walmsley, led by Nora Howcroft.

James Higgins
Crucial to this style of show, amongst others, are pace, continuity and a slick dancing troupe. There were, at times, delays in scene changing, which required the cast to pick up the pace again. The Follies Girls also had their work cut out and whilst the choreography from Lara Crombie was competently carried out, the necessary sparkle and vitality were not much in evidence. Having said that, Gershwin's music and lyrics were a pleasure to hear again, and there were several quite respectable individual performances.

As Bobby Childs, Kevin Rawcliffe, whilst not quite a Fred Astaire, put a great deal of effort into his many successful dance routines. The New York playboy element of the character was a little underdeveloped whilst Teresa Harper, as the small town girl Polly Baker, was vocally and visually a natural and gave an engaging performance. Mike Bailey gave a sound portrayal of Bella Zangler whilst Lank Hawkins, a man non-too-keen on the theatre being saved, was well played by Alan Hitchens, as was Everett Baker by Don Howcroft. Joyce Walters played Bobby's mother with style, whilst the expected man-eating character of Irene Roth (Louise Steggals) was not fully developed.

Knowing that director Nora Howcroft would have required maximum effort to be put into the production by all concerned, I was sorry not to have enjoyed it more.

Glyn Neary

Back to top