Six review: Pitch-perfect queens will have you laughing your head off

The cast of Six the Musical.

Caitlin Tipping as Jane Seymour, Vicki Manser as Katherine Howard, Lauren Drew as Catherine of Aragon, Maddison Bulleyment as Anne Boleyn, Shekinah McFarlane as Anna of Cleves and Elena Gyasi as Catherine Parr in Six the Musical. - Credit: JOHAN PERSSON

Six the Musical is back in the city where it all began, telling the story of Henry VIII's wives as you have never heard it before. 

Six made its debut at the Norwich Playhouse in 2018 and since its humble beginnings it has become a global phenomenon and its fanbase 'The Queendom' has become a huge community. 

This week, the UK tour is at Norwich Theatre Royal, marking the venue's official reopening back at full capacity since the pandemic started.

The cast of Six the Musical.

Caitlin Tipping as Jane Seymour, Maddison Bulleyment as Anne Boleyn, Shekinah McFarlane as Anna of Cleves, Lauren Drew as Catherine of Aragon, Elena Gyasi as Catherine Parr and Vicki Manser as Katherine Howard in Six the Musical. - Credit: JOHAN PERSSON

The show takes the tale that everyone knows of 'divorced, beheaded, died, divorced, beheaded, survived' and turns it on its head as the Tudor queens become a girlband - think The Spice Girls of the 16th century.

During the 80-minute concert-style musical, the six wives tell of their historical heartbreak by each performing a gut-wrenching solo in order of their marriages to Henry. 

The format is a competition and the audience are told at the start that whoever they choose as having the hardest time will become the lead singer.

However, instead of becoming a scrapping contest it turns into a celebration of female empowerment and being in charge of your own story.

Caitlin Tipping as Jane Seymour in Six the Musical. 

Caitlin Tipping as Jane Seymour in Six the Musical. - Credit: JOHAN PERSSON

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All six queens brought their own flavour, and regional accents, to the roles, and Lauren Drew (Catherine of Aragon) and Caitlin Tipping (Jane Seymour) had particularly standout vocals. 

Caitlin's rendition of Heart of Stone, telling of her love for Henry and inner strength was stunning and saw the high-octane show take a sombre turn.

Jennifer Caldwell was hilarious as Anne Boleyn, making sure all the other queens knew she had it worst, and Shekinah McFarlane had the audience in the palm of her hand as Anna of Cleves with her full throttle rap song Get Down.

The cast of Six the Musical

Vicki Manser as Katherine Howard, Caitlin Tipping as Jane Seymour, Kat Bax on Bass, Shekinah McFarlane as Anna of Cleves, Elena Gyasi as Catherine Parr, Maddison Bulleyment as Anne Boleyn and Lauren Drew as Catherine of Aragon in Six the Musical. - Credit: JOHAN PERSSON

Rave song Haus of Holbein saw the cast, including the all-female band, put on glow in the dark collars and sunglasses and the lyrics were genius. 

Vicki Manser brought the sass and powerhouse vocals as Katherine Howard, thrusting the relatively unknown queen into the spotlight, and Natalie Pilkington as Catherine Parr brought the show to a triumphant close. 

Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss' show is a complete triumph filled with catchy songs that will be stuck in my head for weeks.

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