So I actually saw Yank back on the 30th of March at Hope Mill Theatre in Manchester but as it is now transferring to Charing Cross Theatre on 3rd July 2017 it only felt right to share how obsessed I am with it. This fringe performance directed by James Baker was booked on a whim and I really didn’t know what to expect from this “world war II love story” but I don’t think I’ve ever been more in love with a love story than I am with Yank. Transferred over from Broadway this musical is set in the 1940s following Stu as he joins Charley company through training camp. Stu is coming to terms with his sexuality and finding his role within the army even if its not quite on the frontline.
The casting for this production was absolute perfect and I couldn’t imagine these characters being brought to life by any other actor, I can honestly say one of the most talented casts I have ever seen. As an ever envious musical theatre fan, this cast ALL acted, sang and dance to such a high standard especially being in such an intimate theatre you could really see how technical every routine was and I was in awe of every single member of the cast. Scott Hunter who played Stu really shone in the lead role creating such an instant connection with the audience that he really tugged at your heart strings throughout and his tap routine was dancing round my head for the rest of the week! But I think particular interest has to go to Lee Dillon-Stuart who played Tennesse; he’s the kind of character you want to hate but he played it so well I just loved him a little and I really couldn’t take my eyes off him as he danced. He’s precision was impeccable and the way he played the sleazy guy made me cringe, squirm, laugh and fume all within 2 hours of performance and I always think its hardest to play the bad guy especially when you’re part of such a beautiful love story so hats off to you Lee!
Joseph and David Zellnik have written such a clever, thought provoking and beautiful story. It exposes how hard life was for gay men in the war and also how life has developed from the secret sneaking of the 40s. The characters portray men from all walks of life and how war brought people together and changed lives. I cannot recommend this musical more because its like nothing I’ve ever seen so please go grab a ticket to see it at Charing Cross and become utterly obsessed just as I have!