Written By: Mark Armstrong
Format: Music Show
Date: January 12 2019
Location: Empire Theatre, Liverpool
We checked out Wannabe: The Spice Girls Show back in 2017 at the Epstein Theatre (you can read that review by clicking here). Now, the show has returned, this time emanating from the Empire, and the biggest difference concerns the renewed interest in The Spice Girls due to the announcement that they will be touring again later this year, which will be one of the big moments of 2019 for British music.
Nevertheless, even if they weren’t about to perform live again, this would still be a great homage to Sporty, Ginger, Scary, Baby and Posh Spice. The show is all about having fun, losing yourself in the nostalgia of the 90s, and generally having a good time reliving some of the most famous songs of a great decade in Brit Pop. Indeed, Girl Power had a major influence at its peak (which is nearly 25 years ago now, as – ahem – scary as that sounds), and it didn’t take long for it to feel like 1996 all over again with this production, which was perfectly tailored to fans of the group.
Things kicked off with Wannabe, and from there we got to experience all the vintage Spice Girls tunes, from Mama to Viva Forever, from 2 Become 1 to Goodbye, from Who Do You Think You Are to Spice Up Your Life. We also had an interlude of upbeat covers for the likes of Celebrate, and for those who are more familiar with the performers for their solo work, we had some renditions of their singles, with It’s Raining Men going down a storm with the Empire audience.
All five singers did a fine job of bringing to life the Spice Girls, assisted by authentic and instantly-recognisable costumes covering different periods of their career. The dance moves were just what the audience required, and for those looking for a bit of sex appeal, there were several male dancers who ensured that the already-loud cheers and chanting reached another level. The backdrop was simple but effective, with five large letters lighting up to spell out SPICE, and the show as a whole flew by, ensuring that the energy never dropped at any point.
As mentioned earlier, The Spice Girls are about to make an impact on the music industry once again by touring the United Kingdom, and many of those in attendance at the Empire will be going along to see those shows. Before then, though, Wannabe is as good a Spice Girls tribute as you will find, and if nothing else, it is a chance to relax and have fun, and to simply enjoy yourself while singing and dancing with a smile on your face.
Overall Rating: 8.5/10 – Excellent