When the curtain went up and the first song came on, I was sold.
Everyone around me seemed confused, wondering if they were in the right show, but I was enjoying myself, singing along loudy (apologies to my neighbours). Why? Because Jersey Boys is in French! Ok, it starts in French.
Oh what a night was translated into French (the melody was used twice actually) and to start the musical when the “Jersey Boys” were at the height of their career, we start when their hits made it all around world.
So when it said…
Que tous ceux qui sont dans la vibe (lèvent le doigt) (hands up all the guys)
Que toutes celles qui sont dans la vibe (lèvent le doigt) (hands up all the gals)
Que ceux qui sont assis se lèvent (suivent le pas) (everyone who is sitting stand up, follow me)
Allez maintenant on y va
Ces soirées là
… I was the only one who haised my hand. But as soon as the cast switched to English, everyone did follow, and we found ourselves in New Jersey.
The musical first openen in London in 2008 so you may well know but it tells the incredible story of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons (for the younger generation, they did the Big Girls Don’t Cry at the start of Dirty Dancing, and yes, the lead singer is a man).
The Four Seasons, as they were known for a long time, took a while to find themselves (and their name).
The musical is told from the perspective of all four members, how they started out on the wrong side of the tracks, rose to stardom, sold millions of record worldwide (queue me singing in French), all before they turned 30.
But life on the road isn’t easy and Jersey Boys also shows how the four slowly broke apart and how their success impacted their personal lives. Be it loss, divorce, gambling, or simple the urge to be back home, the group broke up; some remained in the music business, others quit, but they all reunited for the Rock’n’ Roll Hall of Fame!
Why am I telling you all this? Because this isn’t about the storyline itself. It is about seeing the characters for yourself, getting to know them (I think each of us has a favourite at the end), and understanding them through their music. And most of all of course, seeing the Jersey Boys perform! Enjoy!
Jersey Boys runs at the Bristol Hippodrome until November 17. Tickets are available here.