New Jersey Nights is a show celebrating the music of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons currently touring Australia and making its final stop in Melbourne. The show consists of 4 equally vocally talented and charismatic singers, a live band with a groovy saxophone player and a handful of dancers. When I first heard about this show, I was excited. Having grown-up enjoying the classics (despite me not being alive during this era), I leaped at the opportunity to see it.
Before I go any further, I must warn you; if you’re going into this show expecting the cast be exactly like Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons or the musical production ‘Jersey Boys’, you’re going to be severely disappointed. This is a tribute show. Not an impersonator show, nor a musical. But if you choose to go to this show desiring to hear your favourite songs live and are keen for a good night out, then this is the show for you.
More like a cabaret show, the typical theatre etiquette is thrown completely out the window with the cast fully encouraging audience participation by singing and cheering, returning funny and sassy comments back to the audience when heckled and whistled at. The numbers performed include big hits such as Sherry and Oh, What A Night. Despite mainly being a tribute show to Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, the cast also play classic covers such as Unchained Melody, Blue Moon and My Girl.
I was surprised by how all the singers could hit the ‘Frankie Valli iconic high notes’ and each took turns to take the lead in different songs. The numbers ranged from catchy bops to ballads and even impressive acapella numbers. Although the show was great, I found the second half of the show a lot more entertaining than the first. Highlights of the show would be when a cast member performed Frankie Valli song, ‘Grease’, and when a lady was taken up on stage to be hilariously serenaded with ‘Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You’.
As a passionate Jersey Boys musical fan, I was sceptical at first but then found to really enjoy myself in the second half of the show. I was laughing, I was smiling so much my face hurt, and I was on my feet, waving my arms, dancing and participating with the rest of the audience. The happiness in the theatre was so pure with all ages gathered for a universal love of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.
Despite being unsure at first, I can confirm that I really enjoyed New Jersey Nights. Not only is it educational with facts about Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, but it was fun. And that’s the most important thing.
New Jersey Nights has one more show at the Comedy Theatre tomorrow night so grab your tickets while you can via Ticketmaster.