Review: Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games @ Palace Theatre, Manchester

Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games proves that magic is still alive as its cast take to stage at The Palace Theatre in Manchester.

The legendary Michael Flatley – the creator, producer, director and choreographer of the production – has never failed to bring a high energy atmosphere to any of his endeavours.

This show is no different as it captures the essence of what people have grown to love and expect from Lord of the Dance.

Classic and awe-inspiring in its roots, the mixture of Irish dancing, singing and violins sees a constant stream of talent hitting the stage.

It’s more than enough to fill the two-hour running time – meaning that the audience are left yearning for more before all is said and done.

On the surface it’s a simple story of good versus evil, seen through the dreams of the Little Spirit.

Flatley’s iconic lead role as the Lord of the Dance is taken up by Manchester’s own James Keegan, who fights against the Dark Lord, played by Tom Cunningham.

Now, of course, Flatley’s shoes aren’t easy to fill.

ACTION: There is plenty of fancy footwork to feast upon

But the charismatic Keegan somehow manages to live up to his predecessor as he brings a commanding stage presence and heaps of charisma.

Admittedly the skill and commitment of all the dancers, with their impressively quick footwork, is sometimes too fast for the eye to follow.

In fact, it’s generally a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it scenario where the audience fret about missing even one bit of this mesmerising action.

Ultimately the flawless timing in the formation is something that everyone can enjoy – and it clearly deserves a great deal of respect and admiration.

There’s even a little treat thrown in for those die-hard fans of Flatley.

After shooting to stardom in the 90s, the enchanting dancer has gained a world-wide following.

During this production, the absence of seeing him perform his record-breaking taps-per-minute footwork live is replaced with cinema-like projections of him dancing in the beginning and ending scenes.

Obviously it’s nowhere near as amazing as seeing the real deal, but it’s a sight that still pleases the bulk of those in attendance.

The original Lord of the Dance debuted in 1996 and since then has been a global sensation for the world of Irish dancing and it’s still inspiring people of all ages to try the genre of dancing for themselves.

Flatley’s legacy lives on in this 2017 tour of Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games, which doesn’t let the audience down.

Let’s just say one viewing may not be enough for some.

*Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games is on at The Palace Theatre until Saturday, April 15.

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