Review: Dreamgirls, Mayflower Theatre, Southampton

Review: Dreamgirls, Mayflower Theatre, Southampton

by Catherine Collins.

The movie adaptation of Dreamgirls is one of my husband’s favourite films of all time, so it had a lot to live up to when it opened at Mayflower Theatre tonight (Tuesday 15 November).

And it did not disappoint!

Dreamgirls tells the story of the rise and fall of The Dreams – Effie, Lorrell and Deena – as they embark on a musical rollercoaster ride through a world of fame, fortune and the ruthless realities of show business, testing their friendship to its limit.

A semi-finalist on The Voice in 2019, Nicole Raquel Dennis is outstanding as Effie – a part that would test the very best of singers, and boy does she show she has talent.

Her emotional performance of And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going just before the interval was phenomenal, and in an act of appreciation usually reserved for the finale – half of the audience was on its feet to applaud it!

The cast in this show are incredible, Brandon Lee Sears, who plays Jimmy, has a stage presence rarely seen in touring shows, and his charisma makes the audience fall in love with him from the very start.

Natalie Kassanga plays the sweet and slightly innocent Deena, and Paige Peddie is Lorrell – both turn in performances showing the range their voices are capable of time and time again.

Curtis is played by Matt Mills, who uses just enough menace on stage to ensure the audience is left understanding the dark undertones of his character.

In fact, the whole ensemble were all impressive from the off. Their chorus vocals and harmonies are wonderfully executed and the choreography, set design and costumes carry the extra elements of the story beautifully.

The cast, music and sheer talent on stage make this show what it is, and I will be first in the queue if it ever returns to Southampton!

Catch it if you can.

Dreamgirls runs until 19 November 2022, tickets available from: or 02380 711811.

  • In Common is not for profit. We rely on donations from readers to keep the site running. Could you help to support us for as little as 25p a week? Please help us to carry on offering independent grass roots media. Visit: