GT Stage

Review: Hot Flush

Lesley Joseph shines in this saucy Sex and the Suburbs

Fresh from a successful new run of Birds of a Feather and her role as man-hungry Dorien, Lesley Joseph takes to the stage in a role perfectly suited to Birds fans. Following the story of menopausal Myra and her three similarly climacteric friends who together form the Hot Flush Club, this a show that allows four women of a certain age to be hilariously funny together and on their own terms. Something that’s still outrageously under represented in the world of entertainment,

With all four ladies responding to “the change” in ways that emphasise each of their unique personalities (The lonely overworked one, the jovial undersexed one, the sassy nymphomaniac and the sensitive widow), all bases are covered and everyone gets a chance to shine. Anne Smith brings plenty of heart to looking-for-love-again Helen, Ruth Keeling serves up a down-to-earth, self-deprecating turn as Jessica, an overweight housewife with a gay son, Lori Haley Fox adds some smokin’ hot Broadway sass, and a great set of pipes, to HRT-lovin' Sylvia, while Lesley Joseph channels Bea Arthur’s Dorothy for her sardonic, purse-lipped lawyer Myra

Of course we can’t forget the wonderful Matt Slack who plays no less than 20 characters, veering from randy vicar (yeah, it’s a bit Carry On in parts) to a sex-obsessed 18-year-old lad with ease. Yes, this is a woman’s world, but it wouldn’t be nothing without this uproariously funny fella.

The audience largely consisted of excitable females nodding furiously in agreement throughout, a good chunk of gay men (of course) and a few brave heterosexual husbands, who know better than to say a word during the entire performance, except perhaps to order drinks at the interval.

The plot may be featherlite, the earth will remain unshattered once the show’s two hours are up, and a good 15 minutes could be shaved off the running time, but Hot Flush delivers massively on entertainment value. Chocked full of genuinely laugh-out-loud moments, ridiculous yet joyous musical numbers and unapologetically saucy humour, the show has bite but also a heart.

Go see this show, take a gal pal who needs a good laugh and leave with the knowledge that any nose hair, male pattern baldness or urge to buy a ridiculous sports car that comes with men's advancing years may not be so bad after all.

Hot Flush is currently on a UK tour until Monday 24 May. Book tickets here.

Words: Lee Dalloway (@Leeroydalvin)

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