Review: Carpenters Gold, The Spa Pavilion, Felixstowe, January 20

Carpenters Gold visited The Spa Pavilion, Felixstowe. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Carpenters Gold visited The Spa Pavilion, Felixstowe. Picture: CONTRIBUTED - Credit: Archant

“When I was young I’d listen to the radio, waiting for my favourite songs” and back in 1972, when I was a mere slip of a girl, many of my favourite songs were those sung by The Carpenters.

It was quite usual to hear me in my bedroom singing my heart out into a pencil, which doubled as my microphone, to tunes such as Goodbye to Love and Top of the World. So much was my love of songs performed by The Carpenters that my dad bought me a cassette player and a tape of their album Song for You. That is when my admiration of this brother and sister act really grew.

You can probably imagine my delight at being asked to review Carpenters Gold. This show not only included the many hits by The Carpenters, it also emulated how they performed when they played at venues such as Talk of the Town and the London Palladium.

Vikki Holland-Bowyer accurately performed as Karen Carpenter, complete with amazing contralto vocals. The talented Greg Stevenson was on piano as Richard Carpenter.

The pair sung and played just as the real duo once did and at the start of the second half of the show Karen played the drums while singing We’ve Only Just Begun. Drumming was a skill the real Karen acquired while at high school and Vikki did a great job of portraying that talent.

Throughout the evening there were interjections of light-hearted humour and enjoyable banter between The Carpenters, the rest of their band and the audience. There was even a ripple of laughter when Karen suggested Felixstowe might be like Miami.

Naturally, the greatest delight of the evening was every time Karen sang. Her performance of Jambalaya got several members of the audience up on their feet dancing and I personally loved her rendition of Ticket to Ride, originally sung by The Beatles; and Superstar which was formerly recorded by Bette Midler.

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The evening ended on a high when the Carpenters treated the audience to a medley of songs they either recorded themselves or would have sung when they appeared on various television shows including Solitaire, Only Yesterday and Sing.

All in all, Carpenters Gold was an absolute joy to witness and I was also rather pleased I could recall most of the lyrics to many of their songs - even after four decades.

Gill Atacocugu

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