In Tom Deering's arrangements – a small string section prominent – many of the songs emerge as sensitive, intensely personal statements, though the title song gets a splendidly large-scale anthemic treatment to kick off the second half
WhatsOnStage on Standing at the Sky's Edge
The arrangements by Tom Deering are beautiful, with a nice mixture of solos, multi-performer songs and whole group numbers.
BroadwayWorld on Standing at the Sky's Edge
There are almost too many musical highlights to mention in Hastie’s deftly directed production, but Maimuna Memon’s haunting rendition of Open Up Your Door, and Faith Omole’s beautiful Coles Corner are among them, while Tom Deering’s arrangements give Hawley’s songs a new lease of life.
The Stage on Standing at the Sky's Edge
Tom Deering’s inspired musical rearrangements add Sixties and Seventies textures to enhance the sense of familiar yet surprising, comforting yet disconcerting. I don’t think I ever fully felt the meaning of You’ll Never Walk Alone until Joanna Riding started singing it here unaccompanied in this adventurous, beguiling, resonant reinvention.
The Times on Carousel
Tom Deering ’s extraordinary reorchestration is fundamental to the salty effect. Nothing bosomy about this. No swelling strings, more the music of the street. Guitar, accordion, euphonium, trombone. The band is in a cove-like shelter at the back of the stage. The evening begins with lump-in-the-throat inducing brass players strolling on to play the signature waltz.
The Observer on Carousel
Music supervisor Tom Deering has re-orchestrated the score, stripping out its lush strings but retaining its soaring melodic beauty. It's familiar yet strange, like meeting an old friend after a long time and its barebones loveliness enables songs such as Julie's "What's the Use of Wond'rin" to emerge not as a defence of a wife-beater – "he's your fella and you love him" – but as a melancholic statement of defeat and resignation. As the orchestra plays the famous overture, a group of brass players take centre stage, as if they've strolled in from a Northern mining town. In their hands, the swirling fairground theme takes on different, darker, but still stirring tones
WhatsOnStage on Carousel
Timothy Sheader’s reinterpretation is musically matched by Tom Deering’s fantastic rescoring. All the big numbers hit high points of showmanship, but the orchestration brings a dark undertow too
The Mail on Sunday
The Mail on Sunday on Carousel
Timothy Sheader’s staging wriggles free of sentimentality to find the darkness in the story, whilst still relishing the comedy and honouring the lush, haunting beauty of the score. Key to this are Tom Deering’s superb orchestration, which replaces the strings with brass and shimmering electric guitar.
The Financial Times
The Financial Times on Carousel
MD Tom Deering’s new orchestral arrangements are fresh, imaginative, accessible and oddly homely, using – among other instruments – accordion and electric guitars, so we’re a long way from the lush strings that 1940s audiences heard. I love the way, for instance, he throws in the variations and psychs up the texture for each recapitulation in ‘June is Bustin’ Out All Over’. And it is a stroke of genius to bring on a brass band at the start to kick off that famous ‘Carousel Waltz’ and tell the audience that we’re in brass band country.
Music Theatre Review on Carousel
Music and dance are key components of any musical, but they very much carry the story here. Compliments must be paid to the 15-piece band, who master Rodgers’ varied score that pinballs from jazz and folk to the more traditional musical numbers for which the show is known (If I Loved You and June is Bustin’ Out All Over among them).
Culture Whisper on Carousel