Pet on top form

EMOTION, power and raw talent - these were the hallmarks of songstress Petula Clark's performance at Ipswich's Regent theatre on October 11. She began by telling us we were the “great unsoaped” of Ipswich, before endearing herself to an audience in awe of a woman with undoubted capacity to entertain at so many levels.

EMOTION, power and raw talent - these were the hallmarks of songstress Petula Clark's performance at Ipswich's Regent theatre last night.

She began by telling us we were the “great unsoaped” of Ipswich, before endearing herself to an audience in awe of a woman with undoubted capacity to entertain at so many levels.

A mixture of old and new songs Petula couldn't fail to disappoint with her rendition of some of the greatest hits from a career that has spanned more than 50 years and, after last night's show, has still yet more to give.

Though the audience wasn't the greatest in number, Petula never missed a beat showing us all facets to her undisputed gifts.

Petula the songwriter, Petula the actress, Petula the poet, Petula the pianist, Petula the singer and Petula the woman - they were all there and the audience lapped up what the legend had to offer.

She offered a set interspersed with anecdotes telling stories of her encounters with some of the great names of show business.

Most Read

She is after all a woman who has known them all - she has danced with Fred Astaire and acted with Charlie Chaplin.

At times moving, Petula's own work, her lyrics especially, show a charming vulnerability and engaging fragility belied by the sheer power of her vocals.

Admitting on stage that songs allowed a shy young girl to express herself and communicate, Petula Clark is far removed from the over confident diva she may well have become.

Jazz, ballads, rock and pop - as well as the greats like Downtown and Don't Sleep In The Subway, she is a talent that hails before the days of cynical marketing and product management.

Her song Losing My Heart To Memphis stood out.

Her renditions of With One look from Sunset Boulevard and Tell Me Its Not True from Blood Brothers reminded us that Petula can so easily deliver the deep emotion prerequisite of a great star.

Clearly enjoying herself, Petula said after her final curtain call and the standing ovation that performing is an emotional experience for her.

She added: “Every song is like a play in my head. It might not have been a big audience but they were wonderful.”

Thank you Pet, we loved it.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter