There are numerous adjectives and superlatives one could use to describe what took place this evening, Friday (Dec 29) at Theatr Ffwrnes.
For one night only the star of the West End and Broadway and home grown talent from Burry Port that is John Owen-Jones took to the stage having cancelled the previous engagement through illness.
Forgiveness is a great thing and he received that in abundance from a capacity audience at the theatre as he walked on to rapturous applause and quickly began to tease and put at ease his adoring fans. It was more like being in a friend’s living room at the best ever party than at a stuffy formal performance as he joked and engaged with the audience about his misfortunate cold, his parents and his rise to stardom. In his own words, this evening was about having a good time, relaxing and feeling at home.
This was a night to remember for all the right reasons. This unassuming, down to Earth performer treated everyone present as a friend or member of the family. It was intimate, funny but above all, extremely moving as he belted out songs from his album ‘Bring Him Home’. We were transported through Les Mis, Chess, Miss Saigon and The Phantom of the Opera.
Despite his best attempts at self deprecation the audience were having none of it as song after song received a huge ovation. If hearing this superstar on top form were not enough the audience were treated to a stellar performance form BGT’s Beau Dermott. The fourteen-year-old hit all the right notes as she performed the song ‘Gravity’ followed by the Christmas favourite, ‘O Holy Night’.
To see and hear both these exceptionally talented people at such close quarters sent shivers up one’s spine. They were within touching distance on a stage bedecked with the simplicity and lack of pretence, which echoed the way they approached the evening. At one point John asked, who knows me from the Theatre group? Who knows me from Glan Y Mor School? Who knows me from the sausage shop? Without exception all hands went up and one could believe it too.
All one can say is, pick any superlative from the list of lists of superlatives and any and all would apply to what the audience experienced and felt following an outstanding evening of entertainment, not in the West End, not on Broadway, but on the Eastside of Llanelli.