Many of you are familiar with the songs of the Drifters, and even if you don’t think you know them, trust me – there will be a tune or two you recognise and find yourself absentmindedly humming along to. But the real question is, are you familiar with the story behind them?
Direct from the West End, The Drifters Girl is currently showing at Mayflower Theatre in Southampton, and we were luckily enough to witness this smash-hit show. Serenading us through hit after hit including; Saturday Night At The Movies, Save The Last Dance For Me, and Stand By Me, the show unravels the complicated history of the Drifters and how they navigated through a carousel of members, under the constant unwavering devotion of Faye Treadwell, battling with sexism and racism to secure a legacy that she believed in.
Carly Mercedes Dyer’s depiction of Faye Treadwell was outstanding, her voice is simply stunning and she has the ability to sing straight to your soul. Carly introduced us to a lady who was strong and resilient, who would not be talked down to or looked over, and who became a legend in her own right, dedicating herself to the Drifters through epic highs and emotional lows. When she took centre stage to beautifully express the raw emotion of loosing a husband and being separated from a daughter it felt like time stood still, she was utterly captivating.
What made this show particularly remarkable was how the four actors who played the Drifters; Miles Anthony Daley, Ashford Campbell, Tarik Frimpong and Dalton Harris, not only played every iconic member of the Drifters line up but also took on other roles to help tell the story, including George Treadwell, reporters, music executives and so many more! Before your eyes they effortlessly switch between characters, taking on new personas, with some laugh out loud comedy moments mixed into the iconic back catalogue, they all showcased true talent.
The choreography saw the cast execute smooth moves, making full use of the stage and captivating the audience into believing that we could in fact have been at a Drifters concert. The atmosphere they built throughout the production through the combination of songs and dance moves meant I had to physically restrain myself at times, fighting the urge to stand up and dance along with them!
This show is for anyone who loves the Drifters, or who wants to celebrate strong women or if you simply just love the theatre. It is playing at Mayflower Theatre until 16th September and the tour continues across the country, so don’t miss out!
Tickets can be booked at www.mayflower.org.uk
Words by Vicky Anscombe
Images: Original West End Cast