Sensational hardly begins to describe this talented trio who combine the smoothest of melded voices, killer solos and extraordinarily clever arrangements. All the above delivered with polish and panache.
Their tightly defined roles allow Mark Jones leeway to exploit his deadpan humorous play as foil to his two blonde chanteuses, Melissa Langton and Libby O’Donovan. The latter pertly producing a list (from her decolletege) of all the Lennon & McCartney songs she had “cut” from the set list. None, of course, of those where she was the soloist.
This comedic running gag takes us on a lovely voyage of familiar and not so well-remembered Lennon & McCartney compositions.
Langton is possessed of an operatic-strength voice; huge in range and depth. O’Donovan’s voice is lighter, but equally lovely in tone and they are both strongly underpinned by Jones with his marvellous piano work. No mean feat when he is also working a sight gag and singing intricate chorus lines to boot.
As well as insightful arrangements this ensemble’s forte lies in variety of programming. Early treats included the snappy Into My Life, and Ticket to Ride contrasted with a very different Norwegian Wood.
Personally, I could have eschewed the country and western version of Ob la Di Ob La Da. To my mind the ensuing gospel number Let It Be was much more satisfying.
In the second half of the show there was an hilarious recording of some of the worst Lennon & McCartney “covers” ever; think an ensemble of dog’s barking I want to hold your hand, for starters.
After a surprising (to this critic) selection of McCartney’s many solo compositions, there was one of the best audience participation segments I have ever witnessed; a gentle, but very amusing quiz. This was so foolishly funny as to leave the participant laughingly unembarrassed and the audience delighted.
After a superb lower register soul offering by O’Donovan and a deeply dramatic James Bond theme we were sent home with the loveliest acapella rendering of Good Night, Sleep Tight.
Downstairs at The Maj
Good Day Sunshine
The Lennon & McCartney Songbook
Starring Melissa Langton, Mark Jones and Libby O’Donovan
Venue: His Majesty’s Theatre | 825 Hay St, Perth WA
Dates: 16 – 18 August 2018
Bookings: ptt.wa.gov.au | (08) 6129292