Brilliant Buddy will have you rocking and rolling in the aisles as it hits Bridlington Spa

The musical is at Bridlington Spa
The musical is at Bridlington Spa

Rave on – to Bridlington Spa where Buddy – The Buddy Holly Story will have you rocking and a rolling in the aisles, singing, clapping  and bellowing for just one more song.

This is the 30th anniversary tour of the show and its first visit to the venue.

In case you missed the message in the title – it is a hit-filled musical biography of Buddy Holly, the man and his music.

It opens with the bespectacled Buddy and the Crickets struggling to fit his natural rock and roll rhythms into the country and western mould demanded by Nashville and Decca records.

It charts Buddy’s meteoric rise to fame through to his final performance at the Surf Ballroom in Clear Lake, Iowa, before his tragic and untimely death at the age of 22 in a plane crash. With him were the Big Bopper and Ritchie Valens.

It shows how in 18 months the young man from Lubbock, Texas, revolutionised the face of popular music, influencing everyone from Bob Dylan and The Beatles to Elton John and Bruce Springsteen.

Buddy is cleverly, cleanly and simply told – there are lots of lights and glitter balls but the show is about the music and the flashiness is in the performance not special effects.

It’s fun, funny and moving – the report of his death is beautifully told with just a guitar and spotlight.

A cast of 12 sing, dance, act and plays instruments ranging from guitar to saxophone. They multi-task to the max – and seemingly effortlessly with leaving the audience breathless with admiration.

Christopher Weeks is the embodiment of the loose-limbed, mild-mannered, eccentric and determined Buddy.

Weeks never leaves the stage – he starts with Rip It Ip and bows out with an encore of Oh Boy – playing the guitar placed behind his head and jumping on the double bass in between.

There are cameos for Joshua Barton as the beetle-crusher footed, drainpipe-trousered Big Bopper and Ben Pryer plays the snake-hipped Ritchie Valens.

The rest of the cast play a multitude of roles ranging from a radio DJ, Buddy’s manager, wife, cast of the Apollo in New York and Buddy’s band the Crickets.

There are songs galore including a beautiful acapella version of Why Do Fools Fall in Love?

Buddy’s hits keep on coming – from Rip It Up to That’ll be the Day, Brown-eyed Handsome Man, Every Day, Peggy Sue and Oh Boy.

The music is cranked up in the second half which culminates in a recreation of part of the Clearwater concert.

Cue Heartbeat, Peggy Sue Got Married, Rave On and Listen to Me plus Big Bopper’s solo spot with Chantilly Lace and the band getting all over La Bamba with Valens.

There is pause for breath when Buddy, accompanied by just a guitar, serenades his wife with True Love Ways and later in the same half Weeks sings Raining in My Heart and shows that it is a real heart-breaker of a song.

There is enough energy in the show to light up the length of the East Coast.

Buddy – The Buddy Holly Story has been belting out rock ‘n’ roll hits for 30 years and let’s hope it has many more years in it.

The show is a joyful, hit-packed all singing, all-dancing, all-rock n’ rolling experience that can be enjoyed by all ages.

It is Bridlington Spa on Tuesday October 15, Wednesday October 16, Thursday October 17, Friday October 18 and Saturday October 19.

Performance times are daily at 7pm (not the usual 7.30pm) with a matinee on Thursday and Saturday at 2pm.