The Simon and Garfunkel Story, 3 Stars

The Simon and Garfunkel Story
Lyric Theatre
4th Sept, 2md Oct, 6th Nov and 4th Dec 2017

“Having formed in 1957 as Tom & Jerry, Simon & Garfunkel went on to become the world’s most iconic folk rock group. Revealing the incredible journey shared by Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel, The Simon & Garfunkel Story takes audience through their meteoric highs and lows. From their humble beginnings, right through their worldwide successes and bitter break-up, culminating with a stunning recreation of their 1981 Central Park reformation concert, audiences can re-live the moments that justified their ten Grammy Awards and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction.

The Simon & Garfunkel Story not only tells the tale of the legendary musicians, but relives their journey within a time capsule of contemporary newsreels, adverts and film footage from the 1960s and beyond.”

Paul Simon played by Sam O’Hanlon
Art Garfunkel played by Charles Blyth

As a tribute band this show is phenomenally good. Great singing and harmonies and they even look like Simon and Garfunkel. It’s great to hear such well known songs!

However as a story it’s rather flat and dull. Their “bitter break-up” becomes a mention like text from wikipedia which leaves you feeling perhaps things got a little tetchy.

To me, a story is a journey,there’s an adventure, there are surprises, there’s emotional involvement, there’s drama. This show is a concert lacking in “story”. Although some facts about their life are stated during the evening. All backed up with some interesting montage on a video screen. The video sets the era but occasionally feels out of context with the text.

The backing musicians upstage the Stars in bucket loads, particularly Leon on Bass Guitar. He was really getting into it while Simon and Garfunkel sung woodenly.I don’t believe Charles Blyth looked at the audience once during the entire evening, preferring to stare into space overhead. Without audience engagement it’s hard to do much except listen to the singing and let your mind wander – the singing was good and the audience showed appreciation with a standing ovation.

The lighting was adequate but would have benefited from some symmetry in focus – both the moving lights and the side lights lacked attention to detail. 1001 lighting fixtures but only 2, the manual follow spots, actually on the lead Singers.

The Sound was really good and at the end of the day, that’s probably the most important thing about any concert.

If you’re a theatre buff you might wonder why so much was missing.
If you’re a Simon and Garfunkel fan you’ll love this show.

Photo credit: Jacqui Wilson

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