Wannabe: The Spice Girls Show (3 stars)

Wannabe: The Spice Girls Show

Lavish tribute routines to Posh, Sporty and the gang

With a word-salad description in the brochure – it is Spice Girls songs that almost coalesce into a description – Wannabe is really only for dedicated fans of media-friendly and probably problematic feminist 1990s pop. Little in the way of narrative aside from a sporadic voice-over, it rushes through the Spice Girls' hits with a cast that does a fair visual impersonation of the five and relies heavily on the audience's enthusiasm for a dose of spice in the late evening.

Aside from the hilarious sudden drop in audience interest when they decide to perform of montage of the solo hits – only rescued by Geri's It's Raining Men – the show romps through the tunes, all flashing lights and costumes that show plenty of skin. There's a bit of banter between the girls, teasing Posh and Ginger for leaving, but it never raises itself above a high-octane tribute routine. Rather like the band, it fails to raise any questions about feminism, female friendship or the importance of revealing outfits in the context of female independence. Rather, it aims to be fun and the seated auditorium operates as a barrier to the outbreaks of mass dancing that it does provoke.

The two male dancers break out some hip hop moves, but mostly provide foils to the singers, and this is a show that is full of energy and dedicated to the fans.

Assembly Rooms, until 25 Aug (not 19), 10.35pm, £16–£18 (£15–£17).

Wannabe: The Spice Girls Show

  • 3 stars

Stop right now! Thank you very much. It's time to Spice Up Your Life like it's 1996. Relive the 90s through the hits of the Spice Girls on this Spice World journey; all you have to do is Say You'll Be There. Swing it, shake it, move it, make it down and if you think it's all Too Much, then really – Who Do You Think…

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