WYS on Show
Victoria Theatre, Halifax
By Gail Waddington
Every two years, West Yorkshire Scouts take over the Victoria Theatre in a mind-boggling feat of organisation, bringing together 100 young people aged eight to 25 supported by hundreds of volunteers. On this evidence it was a risk worth taking.
It was an evening of high-energy, committed performances in the variety style, during which the audience, many from the scouting family, were treated to three hours of high-class professional ensemble playing.
The scouting ethos was evident in this fantastic ensemble performance and, refreshingly today, the many and very talented solo performers were not picked out in the programme: they were there for love!
There was something for everyone. Sketches, ballads, humour – “My name’s Britannia and I ‘wave’ the rules”, an Elton John tribute, a “two-man, one-man band”, a beautifully choreographed Olympics montage, a moving tribute to the charity partner Shelter Box and an ambitious piece on roller skates which had the audience holding its breath – were all stunning.
The Scouts is not foremost a performance organisation but clearly has some accomplished singers, dancers and musicians in every genre, backed by dedicated volunteers with clear talents of their own. The lighting was some of the best seen in a show of this type for a long time, making for a stunning visual impact.
The Scouts’ own motto “Be Prepared” had obviously been taken to heart – this was slick stuff! An excellent evening’s entertainment – catch it tomorrow if you can.