48, Aldwych, London WC2B 4DF 0845 200 7981
- Theatremonkey show opinion
- Reader reviews
- Performance schedule
- Ticket prices
The songs and biography of the legend from Nutbush, Tennessee.
For some unknown reason, producers also want it stated that Tina Turner herself does not appear in this show...
Note: Contains loud music, gunshots, haze, strobe lighting and material that some audience members may find uncomfortable.
(Seen at the afternoon preview performance on 12th April 2018). Some actors may have since left the cast.
This show pulls no punches – literally. Domestic abuse dominates the dramatic action, and one use of “the N-word” provides an even bigger kick, eliciting much sharp breath intake in the stalls.
These facts alone should be sufficient to raise this “jukebox biog musical” above the common herd, giving it a central weight lacking in its more frivolous next door neighbour from the same director, Phyllida Lloyd. Oddly, however, for various reasons it fails to capitalise on such gritty stuff.
Perhaps not wishing to alienate those expecting simply a string of classic hits and a good drunken bop, the whole lands rather uncomfortably nowhere for much of the time. The first half, particularly the early years, drag, with the odd song thrown in as a promise of things to come. There’s a spark with the early recording of “River Deep, Mountain High” but the show is afraid to truly unleash at that stage.
It takes until the far looser second half for things to really move up a gear. From the (admittedly slightly over-heavy on symbolism, light on meaning) “Private Dancer” opening, there are increasing hints at the better stuff to come, and eventually it arrives. Sadly, this is just as the other “serious” theme of the show goes out of the window in favour of the expected “get the audience up and dancing, which is what they came for” ending. The effect is to torpedo frustratingly rounding off the story some had been working with for the past two and a half hours.
That isn’t to say the show isn’t well enough done. The sound design (Nevin Steinberg) is exceptional, the mixer desk operators outstanding. Mark Thompson’s revolving and raising wall set is ingenious, the costume details spot on, Campbell Young Associates wigs appropriately Turner.
The performances are mostly better than good too. Jenny Fitzpatrick as Tina can belt as required, and comes into her own as a mature lady. Her “mini-me” Neya-Nyomi Brown does nicely too, with a fun spot of her own. Quick mention while on the subject for Arianna Duffus as Young Alline Bullock, and particularly Caelan Edie as abused Young Craig – acting beyond his years in a difficult scene for even a mature performer.
Tom Goodwin is a fun Phil Spector and Terry Britton, Ryan O’Donnell doing well as Roger Davies. The entire ensemble (the monkey got a real close-up at one stage) sing and dance a storm against the projections and lights, adding a lot to the atmosphere.
That it didn’t really engage a mature midweek matinee audience is probably not their fault. It isn’t a show that really carries watchers along, more a series of episodes punctuated by great numbers.
Still, those numbers are great, and it’s a decent evening in the main. Worth a look for those seeking less heavy but still engaging West End fare.
The trip to see Tina was very impromptu, only booked the ticket this morning (7th April 2018) when seats A7 to 10 in the dress circle showed up as being available. I chose A7 - classed as restricted view due to the rail, but £30 cheaper than the premium seat next to it. I would say it was worth saving the money - there was a vertical bar down the middle of my field of vision, but easily avoidable. I stopped noticing after a while. The horizontal bar was a little more intrusive but someone shorter wouldn’t have it as a problem. Overall, the view was great and legroom just about ok. I am sure there are much better seats to be had for the same price but if faced with the same limited choice I had I would recommend this seat over the premium alternatives.
I really enjoyed the show. Like all jukebox musicals the songs are shoehorned in with varying degrees of success, and it took me a while to get my head round the fact that some songs were placed chronologically in the correct time, whilst others where not. Basically it comes down to if the song is part of the story or telling the story. But it looked and sounded fantastic, and superbly sung by a very talented cast. Adrienne Warren however is nothing short of sensational - she has the look, mannerisms and most importantly the voice of Tina Turner perfected. She absolutely commanded the stage every time she was on, which was pretty much all the time. I would say that without such a strong lead then the weaknesses in the book would be more apparent but she is worth the money alone.
So basically, I would say this is a must - see, providing you enjoy Tina’s music of course!
Attended a preview performance on Saturday 31st March 2018.
I though the show as a whole was really good. The first half kicked off really well portraying the child Tina at church singing a rendition of 'Nutbush City Limits,' and the audience was already bouncing in their seats. Unfortunately from that point on the tempo seemed to drop for the rest of the first half.
I enjoyed the second half much more and was up dancing with the rest at the concert style finale.
I did think some of the sets looked a bit on the cheap side - the huge fish tank in the living room scenes with very static fish, for example - and parts of the show were made to feel like a bit pantomime-like thanks to other audience members who frequently booed Ike and laughed uncomfortably during the violent scenes.
The cast however were all excellent and believable in their roles, and Adrienne Warren simply is Tina Turner. It was amazing how she managed to morph from a 17 year girl to the megastar we all know and love today. Most of the 23 songs fitted in to the story well.
All in all it was a very enjoyable afternoon, and I did leave knowing a lot more about Tina Turner that I did when I arrived.
We sat in stalls seats H4, 5 and 6 which were to the right of the stage. As most the action was played centre stage none of us felt this was an issue and would happily sit here again.
Grand Circle Seat B1: Worst seat I have ever had in a theatre.
Side view of only half the stage. When people sat in A row I then only had 1/4 of stage view with a large lady with large hair blocking my view.
If people in row A lean forward because they can't see Row B then also can't see.
The air conditioning was too much I was frozen.
Not happy paying £80 for seat.
Went to see Tina last night (12th June 2018). Really enjoyed it actually - I do love a show where you can see how they’ve spent the ticket money. We also had rather good seats (quite by accident) in that handy row in the Grand Circle that has loads of legroom and is by the entrance to the bar.
We wanted to see Tina (entered lottery from the States, but didn't win). We went to the box office on Saturday 30th June 2018 around 11am, were offered the slip seats for £10 each, but with the comment that we would miss 50% of the stage. We declined. We declined premium seats - but got stalls singles D14 and J3 for £70 each. Perfect view. Perfect sound. Perfect seat. I sat in J3. It didn't feel far from the stage. I had a nice clear view. Big bonus was the ability to stretch legs out. I'm not tall, but taller people would appreciate. However, it did mean some latecomers crossed in front.
2nd May 2019. Something amazing happened... Rush tickets for Tina!! I'd pretty much given up on the idea of seeing this due to a lack of good value seats, and suddenly with next to no warning there they were on rush! I got dress circle G11-12 for £25 each. Seats were great for £25 but I really struggle to see how they're selling them at premium. The dress circle is a weird one, it has an almost unprecedented amount of legroom, comparable to stalls in plenty of theatres I've been to. So it's great for the long-legged among us, but for me (at 5 foot 1) the rake just wasn't steep enough. It didn't help that a pair of dummies two rows in front spent the entire evening leaning right forwards, so that when --- was standing front and centre (which is pretty much during all the big numbers) I could only see her from the shoulders up! For everything else the view was fine though, and I particularly enjoyed the visuals of the opening scene.
I really enjoyed the show. Yes, the pacing is completely inconsistent and some of the storylines are a bit throwaway. But if you're there to see great musical numbers interspersed with entertaining scenes (as I most definitely was) then you won't be disappointed. The vocals were great, and props to whoever was on the desk because the overall sound quality was incredible! The only part that fell a bit flat for me was 'Simply The Best,' which was a shame as this is what it had all been building towards, but I thought the energy picked up again during the encore. (Interestingly though, someone else who had been on the same night posted that they thought 'Simply The Best' was the only decent part, just goes to show different strokes for different folks and all that.)
I was seated in Stalls N9 on Thursday evening 8th August 2019. All the principal cast members were performing including Nkeki Obi-Melekwe as Tina and Ashley Zhangazha as Ike Turner.
I am not a major fan of Tina Turner but my partner is, and I have to say I did thoroughly enjoyed the show. The music was much more rocky than I expected (which I like!) and I did recognise a few of the hits. I don't know if Ike's band was playing live, but the guitarists from the orchestra did appear on stage near the end of the show. The performances from the entire cast were spot on and the whole show was played as if it was the cast's first outing, not one of eight shows a week.
There was just one downside to the evening. Seat N9 is a good seat, reasonably central, and not too far back in the auditorium. Leg room was fine. Unfortunately I had rather a large gentleman sitting in front of me which rather spoiled the view especially as he sat bolt upright throughout most of the show. I think I was just unlucky on the evening as I consider N9 to be a decent seat despite being a few rows further back than I usually like. Actually I can't really complain as we got our seats at a discount!
Have been looking forward to seeing this for a while.
Had stalls seats Z 1-4 so practically whole aisle for leg room in front - so worth bearing in mind if you are tall. Also very close to toilets (very clean and modern) / exit; so handy for interval/leaving.
Had a good view. The only time I couldn't see, due to the overhang, was right at the end when Tina was up steps - but OK apart from that.
Show was good, but stopped for 30 minutes as technical difficulties before interval, and different "Tina" appeared in 2nd half as 1st "Tina" was "indisposed".
All the characters performances were good, but would have preferred more actual songs and less story. End performance was very high-energy but seemed to jar a bit considering the rest of the show had a more serious tone (frequent scenes of domestic violence - did wonder if 1st Tina accidently got injured before interval?). The guy playing Roger was entertaining.
Much preferred "Drifters Girl" musical.
Stalls J19: Fantastic view! Unlimited legroom! You are on an aisle so people do walk in front of you.
The monkey advises checking performance times on your tickets and that performances are happening as scheduled, before travelling.
Tuesday at 7pm
Wednesday at 7.30pm
Thursday at 2.30pm and 7.30pm
Friday at 7.30pm
Saturday at 2.30pm and 7.30pm
Sunday at 3pm
NO MONDAY PERFORMANCES.
Runs 2 hours 45 minutes approximately.
Theatres use "dynamic pricing." Seat prices change according to demand for a particular performance. Prices below were compiled as booking originally opened. Current prices are advised at time of enquiry.
Tuesday and Wednesday Evenings
Thursday Afternoons and Evenings
Friday Evenings and Sunday Afternoons
Saturday Afternoons and Evenings
Online Lottery: Todaytix offers users the chance to secure tickets (location at venue discretion) to that night’s performance priced £25 each. A lottery will run each day from midnight, via the app at Todaytix. If lucky enough to secure tickets, users are notified via push notifications or email and can then collect them from the theatre on the night.