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REVIEW: Everybody's Talking About Jamie, UK Tour, Glasgow 2024

13 May 2024

The King's Theatre, Glasgow


Ivano Turco as Jamie in Everybody's Talking About Jamie. Photo credit: Matt Crockett

Meet Jamie New.

He's a superstar and you don't even know it!

Following a three-year West End residency, a sold out UK and Ireland tour, and an award-winning film, Everybody's Talking About Jamie the hit musical has a new UK tour cast for 2023 / 24 and they have brought their towering high heels to Glasgow for the week.

Playing Glasgow King's Theatre from Monday 13th to Saturday 18th May 2024 Everybody's Talking About Jamie is the high-energy, inspiring story of a sixteen year-old boy who dreams of being a drag queen.

Ivano Turco is a star

The story of a schoolboy from a council estate in Sheffield who's also wannabe superstar really does rely on a strong, charismatic lead actor. Originated by John McCrea, and then slayed by Layton Williams in the original UK tour, Ivano Turco had big shoes to fill... but he wears them with style! Ivano Turco is nothing short of glorious as Jamie New. His singing voice is buttery soft and his dance moves and stage presence are remarkable. Ivano looks and sounds sensational. I understand that he's a relatively recent graduate, but he's already, clearly, a star.

Focusing on Jamie's life during his later high school days this musical highlights challenges that many of us will be familiar with: bullies, prejudice, troubles at home, overbearing teachers and general teenage unpleasantness. It can be tough to watch at times and shocking to hear the offensive insults and cruelty that Jamie and his best friend Pritti face.

Jamie is lucky to have strong women in his life: a good friend in Pritti (Talia Palamathanan), a fantastic, adoring mum (Rebecca McKinnis) and a straight-talking "Aunt" Ray (Sejal Keshwala), but when he meets Hugo, the owner of a local drag clothing shop (Kevin Clifton) his eyes are opened to a whole new world of possibility.

Ivano Turco as Jamie in Everybody's Talking About Jamie. Photo credit: Matt Crockett

Kevin Clifton has never been more fabulous!

Strictly legend Kevin Clifton has been genuinely successful in transferring his dance career to the musical theatre stage. I've seen him star in a number of productions over the years, from Stacey Jaxx in Rock of Ages, to Cosmo Brown in Singin' in the Rain and Scott Hastings in Strictly Ballroom. He has much less to do here in the supporting role of Hugo / Loco Chanelle with only two solo / lead songs, but his impact is still significant and lasting.

With fewer song and dance numbers than we're used to seeing him in, Kevin's acting talent has a chance to shine. He brings a softness and vulnerability to the role of Hugo as well as a very believable Yorkshire accent. He is a genuinely fantastic all-rounder and truly belongs on the stage. In the curtain call he looked to be having the time of his life. And why not! Kevin Clifton has never been more fabulous. My favourite Hugo yet.

Ivano Turco as Jamie and Kevin Clifton as Hugo in Everybody's Talking About Jamie. Photo credit: Matt Crockett

The wider company play Jamie's classmates and they really do bring the energy of teenagers to the showstopping ensemble numbers. The choreography from Sadlers Wells Associate Artist Kate Prince is electrifying.

The well-designed set transforms from classroom to Jamie's home to Hugo's shop and back again in a clever sequence of fluid movements. It's all gorgeously lit and skilfully staged. This polished UK tour show looks like a West End production.

The trio of drag queens who make a few brief but memorable appearances - Sandra Bollock (Garry Lee), Tray Sophisticay (David McNair) and Laika Virgin (Anthony Gyde) - bring a swirl of sparkle and a lot of comedy to the show. Their no-nonsense attitudes and crude humour are a welcome relief from the negativity Jamie faces elsewhere. I do wish they featured more, but every moment they were onstage was a delight.

The original score of Everybody's Talking about Jamie is one of it's strengths.

Written by lead singer-songwriter of The Feeling, Dan Gillespie Sells and with lyrics from writer Tom MacRae, the original score of Everybody's Talking About Jamie is full of modern musical treasures. The shows bursts into life with 'And You Don't Even Know It' and then takes us through gems such as 'The Wall in My Head', 'Work of Art' and 'Out of The Darkness.' But it is the sensational 'He's My Boy' that soars above all else. It's one of the best songs in musical theatre in my opinion and Rebecca McKinnis brought the King's Theatre house down with it. You could hear a pin drop as Rebecca poured her heart on to the stage and It. Was. Glorious! I genuinely had goosebumps.

The excellent live band for Everybody's Talking About Jamie are seated onstage in full view of the audience and that tells you just how important the music is to the core of this show. The official West End cast recording of Everybody's Talking About Jamie won the WhatsOnStage award for Best Original Cast Recording in 2019. But there's also a strong book that has been carefully brought up to date with contemporary references, spectacular presentation and a brilliant cast. It all comes together to ensure we'll all still be talking about Jamie for years to come.


📸 Production photos: Matt Crockett


Everybody's Talking About Jamie Cast

Ivano Turco as Jamie in Everybody's Talking About Jamie. Photo credit: Matt Crockett

Ivano Turco plays Jamie New

Rebecca McKinnis plays Margaret New

Liv Ashman plays Vicki

Rhiannon Bacchus plays Fatimah

Takaiyah Bailey (Swing)

Sam Bailey plays Miss Hedge

Geoff Berrisford plays Sayid

Kevin Clifton plays Hugo / Loco Chanelle

Jessica Daugirda plays Bex

Finton Flynn plays young Loco Chanelle / Jamie New cover

Georgina Hagen (Understudy Margaret / Ray / Miss Hedge)

KY Kelly (Anthony Gyde) plays Laika Virgin

Sejal Keshwala plays Ray

Annabelle Laing plays Becca

Garry Lee plays Sandra Bollock

David McNair plays Tray Sophisticay

Luca Moscardini plays Levi

Joshian Omana plays Cy

Talia Palamathanan plays Pritti Pasha.

Jordan Ricketts plays Dean

Akshay St Clair plays Dad

Thomas Walton plays Mickey

Joe Wolstenholme (Swing)

Ivano Turco as Jamie and Talia Palamathanan as Pritti in Everybody's Talking About Jamie. Photo credit: Matt Crockett

Music by Dan Gillespie Sells 

Book and Lyrics by Tom MacRae

From an idea by Jonathan Butterell

Directed by Matt Ryan from original direction by Jonathan Butterell

Design by Anna Fleischle

Choreography by Kate Prince

Ivano Turco as Jamie in Everybody's Talking About Jamie. Photo credit: Matt Crockett

Lighting design by Lucy Carter

Sound design by Paul Groothuis

Video Design Luke Halls

Casting by Will Burton

Musical Supervisor Theo Jamieson


Everybody’s Talking About Jamie UK Tour dates, venues and tickets


The King’s Theatre, Glasgow

Mon 13 – Sat 18 May 2024


His Majesty’s Theatre, Aberdeen

Tue 21 – Sat 25 May 2024

Milton Keynes Theatre

Mon 10 Jun - Sat 15 Jun 2024

📅 Find more Everybody’s Talking About Jamie tour dates and venues here:

➡️ See what else is coming up at Glasgow King's Theatre soon including Jesus Christ Superstar, & Juliet, Come From Away and 101 Dalmatians.

*Some links are ATG affiliate links

ATG Tickets, Ambassador Theatre Group new logo

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Fees are waived on all theatre, dance, opera and musical productions across the website on bookings made from 10 – 19 May 2024 for performance dates from 11 May – 7 July

Current theatre, musicals and events confirmed for LOVEtheatre Week this May include Cabaret, Fawlty Towers, Guys & Dolls, Kathy & Stella Solve A Murder, Kiss Me, Kate, Sister Act, Shrek, Standing at the Sky’s Edge, Tina, The Book of Mormon, The Choir of Man, The Hills of California and The Play That Goes Wrong.

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*The above links are affiliate links

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Everybody's Talking About Jamie review, UK Tour, King's Theatre Glasgow 2024. Ivano Turco, Kevin Clifton, Sam Bailey, Rebecca McKinnis.

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Lisa in the Theatre, Scottish Theatre, UK theatre blogger, reviewer, critic


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