Jiving Generations Rock the Edinburgh Aisles

AJ Jenks, Hannah Price in Buddy Musical

Musical tastes change through the generations – but 50’s sensation Buddy Holly’s tunes can still get both the young and old rocking in the aisles.

Edinburgh’s Festival Theatre came alive on the opening night of the simply brilliant musical Buddy, which runs through until Saturday 18th March.

With accomplished guitarist, singer and actor A J Jenks revelling in the role of Buddy, we were in safe hands and the vibe from the cast meant it was going to be a fun and lively night.

This ex-West End show is touring the UK until October and tells the tale of Buddy’s quick rise to fame from apparent obscurity to number one man in little over 18 months, only to end in tragedy when he dies in a plane crash at the tender age of 22.

My teenage daughter Flossie was unsure of what the night would bring, but her enthusiasm to find some Buddy tunes via digital music on the way home, says it all!

And luckily for A J Jenks, Flossie thought his voice was better than the real man’s, praise indeed from a 13-year-old!

Buddy Musical

The set and lighting by designers Adrian Rees and Daz Coopland brought colour to the show about a man who was the first rock n’ roll star to write his own songs, the first to popularise the two guitar/one bass/one drum line-up and the first to get involved in production, pioneering overdubbing, double-tracking and orchestral techniques.

With polished and often interchanging performances by fellow actors/musicians Miguel Angel (Tyrone Jones and Ritchie Valens), Thomas Mitchell (Decca producer, Norman Petty, DJ, MC and Murray Deutch). Daniella Agredo Piper (Maria Elena), Stephanie Cremona (Vi Petty) and Laura-Dene Perryman, the show was slick and full of energy and peppered with hits.

Stand out performances were from Joe Butcher (Joe B Mauldin), who enthusiastically jumped and danced all over his double base and my favourite, Christopher Chandler (The Big Popper), who was as cheesy as they come.

Writer and producer Alan Janes, director Matt Salisbury and musical director Dean Elliott have the show just right, with a good storyline backed up with the best of Buddy and his band The Crickets, which went down well with the audience as they sang, clapped and danced to a raft of old favourites such as Peggy Sue, Heartbeat and All My Loving, All My Kisses.

A feel-good show which the man himself would have been proud of!

For ticket availability for the Edinburgh Festival Theatre show, please check out: www.capitaltheatres.com.

Rebecca Hay is an experienced travel writer and member of The British Guild of Travel Writers. Follow her adventures with her family on Twitter and Instagram @emojiadventurer and on Facebook via EmojiAdventurers2.

Photographs courtesy of Buddy The Musical

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