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Londoners – if you have not already caught Pajama Game at the Shaftsbury Theatre, you are in for a treat! It is playing a limited run through the 13th of September 2014 so grab your tickets now. There are several good sales on right now so now is the time to buy! There are three reasons why you must run, not walk, to the Shaftsbury Theatre and preferably before the end of the month. Those three reasons would be the amazing leads – Michael Xavier, Joanna Riding and Peter Polycarpou. 
Michael Xavier & Joanna Riding (C) Tristram Kenton.
Michael Xavier plays Sid Sorokin opposite Jo Riding‘s Babe Williams and together they ignite the stage with their chemistry, exuberance and dynamic vocals, especially noted in their show-stopping duet There Once Was A Man and individual solos. I had grown up listening to Joanna Riding‘s recordings of Martin Guerre and Carousel and so when I met her at the stage door for Stephen Ward where she rightly stole the show with her act two number, I’m Hopeless When It Comes to You (mp3), she encouraged me to come see Pajama Game and I could not be happier with my choice to follow through and buy a ticket. She is an exceptional actress who can weave a story with her voice and face — take my word for it but why not make a night out to see her live for yourself.  Michael Xavier was someone unknown to me but what a treat! I was so taken with his voice that I describe as melted butter on bread, that I bought the mp3 for Love Story (a musical adaptation of the 1970 film co-starring Peter Polycarpou). He commands the stage at 6’3″ and as you would hope his voice is just as strong and impressive as his height and good looks.
Peter Polycarpou (C) Catherine Ashmore.
Peter Polycarpou plays Venon Hines (until 31 May) and I have been a great admirer of his talent since I first heard his voice on the cassette tape of Miss Saigon.  Several of his other notable performances have included: Sweeney Todd (Beadle Bamford), Imagine This (Daniel/Eleazar), Oklahoma! (Ali Hakim) and Les Miserables (Thenardier) to name but a few. His comedic timing is perhaps legendary and at tonight’s performance he did not fail giving a brilliantly executed and hilarious I’ll Never Be Jealous Again. The audience was in stitches.  Unfortunately he leaves the show after the end of the month and while I am sure the next Hines will be great too, I strongly recommend you buy tickets for this week if at all possible.
Peter Polycarpou at the stage door.
Joanna Riding at the stage door.
What a wonderful night out at the theatre this bank holiday! Go and see it for yourself — you will be in for a treat.