John Partridge: Stripped
- Adeline Amar
- 8 August 2018
The EastEnders / Celebrity Big Brother / West End star turns to musical theatre and revelations
Stripped is an autobiographical account of Partridge's struggles and successes. Through song covers and spoken word interludes, he offers a very personal look at his life, from addiction and the loss of his parents, to his dancing career and sobriety.
He is supported on flawless vocals by Emma Lindars, who also acts as occasional background characters in the transitions between songs, which Partridge introduces with personal anecdotes. Home photos displayed on a screen reinforce the intimate aspect of the show — for instance, his own wedding photos as he performs a take on the Police's 'Every Little Thing (S)He Does Is Magic'.
There is no denying Partridge is a multi-talented man; every song cover is performed in all-out, West End-style fashion, from Stevie Wonder to Sia. The interludes, however, can feel overly polished, making it difficult to distinguish between perfectly rehearsed performance and moments of genuine emotion.
While the show is a moment of vulnerability and emotional honesty for Partridge, this is perhaps not as obvious for those who are unfamiliar with his career. Still, few people could pull of a rendition of Bowie's 'Bring Me the Disco King' as impressively as he does, and Stripped remains a powerful, enjoyable piece of entertainment.
Assembly Checkpoint, until 26 Aug (not 8, 13, 20), 6.30pm, £15 (£13).