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Tour 2009 UK: Reviews & Interviews, Tuesday 23rd June 2009

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By Andy Nicholls on 8:25am Tuesday 23rd June 2009

IF aliens do invade earth, they will surely spend some time studying Jeff Wayne's marvellous War Of The Worlds - currently celebrating its 30th anniversary - to work out why it's been such a huge success.

But you don't have to have been beamed half way across the galaxy to discover the secret.

With stunning special effects and an excellent musical score, the show which ends a two-night run at the BIC on Tuesday night (tonight June 23) is a feast for the senses. You see it, hear it and feel it.

There's Jeff Wayne conducting the Black Smoke Band and the ULLAdubULLA strings.

A superb cast including Justin Hayward, Shannon Noll and Jennifer Ellison.

The 35-foot Martian fighting machine that fires 'heat rays' in the audience.

There's smoke and explosions and the guy next to me spent a good few minutes leaping from his seat.

The 11-foot high hologram of Richard Burton performing his role as George Herbert The Journalist.

A fantastic 100-foot wide screen showing CGI animation of the invasion and close-ups of the performers as well as other movie clips depicting the story.

And then there's the thudding underneath your seat as the Martian machines disintegrate all in their path.

The haunting Forever Autumn was sung impeccably by Moody Blues' Justin Hayward - a song he made famous all those years ago - and on cue, paper leaves of all hues floated down amongst the audience.

At the end of the two and a quarter hour show, the sell-out crowd gave the performers a well-deserved standing ovation.

Here's to the next 30 years, Jeff.

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