Reviews for Starlight – including WHAT THE PAPERS SAY

STARLIGHT ***** PAUL LEVIE Herald Express

Another glittering production from the cast of the Babbacombe Theatre ushers in a burst of summer sunshine in the dark days ahead.

For a couple of hours, funny man Steve Laister and his talented team transport you to a time when summers were non-stop gaiety and fun.  And this was especially so with the introduction of some nostalgic favourites such as Dame Edna Everidge and the Two Ronnies – brought bang up to date by producer/director Colin Matthews.

As always with Matthews’ productions, Starlight makes the most of true talent, glamour and versatility to always fill the stage to bursting, despite a compact cast.This was never more obvious than in the closing act of the first half that produced not one, but two terrific Tina Turners in the shape of vocalists Lindsey Collard and Holly Cosgrove belting out ‘Simply the Best’ But that’s not enough for the Babbacombe Theatre.  Oh no.  They then went on to produce another THREE Tina Turners in Steve Laister, Wayne Martin, and Paul Cobley.  Hilarious.  Then another SIX Tina Turners in the shape of sexy dance troupe Danze Chique.
And then blow me down, another THREE mini-Tina Turners in the shape of the captivating little ‘uns of Kidz and Co.  Absolutely stunning.  How on earth does Colin Matthews come up with these ideas?

The secret to the winning formula is the sheer quality of all four leading vocalists, cemented by Steve Laister’s comedy genius. Many of the audience go back to Babbacombe year after year to be royally entertained.  But the shows are always fresh, always topical and always better than the one before. This is one of the funniest shows they have ever produced, but also one of the most glitzy and glamorous with stunning costumes and precision choreography.

Do yourselves a favour.  Forget the war if just for a couple of hours.  Forget Covid.  Forget the cost-of-living crisis.  And have yourselves your very own Partygate!


Reviewed for The Entertainment Views Blog by Helen McWilliams

Back in the day when I was just a wee bit younger than I am now (yes, just a wee bit!) I remember going to Babbacombe Theatre with my mum and dad where I would gasp in wonder at the stunning cornucopia of performers in front of me. I was usually a bit mystified by the comedians, however the songs were always real sing-along toe-tapping numbers, and the memory has remained.

It’s no surprise that I jumped at the chance to review Starlight, the latest variety spectacular running at Babbacombe Theatre until 19 October 2022. The production blew me away, the cast put a huge smile on my face and the show itself is the perfect remedy for an uncertain time. From the moment the full company sang a rousing version of Shining Stars, they had my attention, my husband was equally transfixed, and our 8-year-old son was completely enchanted.

It was immediately obvious that we were in safe hands with the widely experienced Steve Laister who also went on to have the house in fits of laughter, practically rolling in the aisles when he impersonated my childhood favourite, Dame Edna Everage. With topical jokes, the most meticulous comic timing and exceptional stage presence, Laister not only entertained with humour, but his singing voice is also just as spectacular. Wayne Martin first appeared in 2007, his cheeky personality, vocal ability that raised the roof and hilarious double act with Paul Cobley is just one of the many highlights of the show. Cobley is equally naturally funny, and he has a singing voice I could listen to in a solo show. Martin and Cobley as Stavros Flatley is a memory I’ll keep for a long time.

Adding their remarkable talent to the mix are Holly Cosgrove and Lindsey Collard. Cosgrove has a unique voice that lends itself to an impressive range of musical numbers. Collard should be on a west end stage with her glorious vocal talent, and she can do a mean impersonation of the late Victoria Wood, too. Completing the line-up there’s Danze Chique, a fantastic troupe of dancers who add their splendour and wonderful flexibility to the stage. Kidz & Co also gave a gorgeous performance – stars of the future!

West Side Story, Starlight Express and many other popular tunes are part of the set, there are some terrific dance numbers and so much audience interaction. It was a fun, energetic party that I’d more than happily sit through again and again. Colin Matthews has produced and directed a hit show that’s bound to be a sell-out.

"Starlight" Does Not Disappoint. David Evitts for RIVIERA FM

I've always enjoyed the season-long shows at The Babbacombe Theatre, and this year's Summer offering, "Starlight" did not disappoint. From the moment the curtain went up, it was obvious that the audience were in for a top rated evening of music, comedy, and enjoyment.

All of the cast were exceptional from the host Steve Laister, all the way through the main cast members, the dancers, and the exceptionally cute "Kidz and Co.", who are definitely great talented for the future.

Non stop entertainment, with amazing costumes, wonderful songs, and hilarious comedy. I loved every minute, and will definitely going back for another look.

More reviews across the worldwide web. Tripadvisor - thank you Sheila R.

Non stop fun , song and dance. What a treat , I can throughly recommend Starlight and the Babbacombe Theatre … The fun cast kept the show going with laugh out loud jokes , very charming dancing and lots of popular songs … it didn’t dip for a moment .
( Very comfortable seats as well )
A show to lift your spirits , well done everyone involved .

Brian M on TripAdvisor - Thank you!

We visited last Wednesday you really must go it was as good as a London show I am not going to mention anyone by name each and every comedian dancer and singer was superb i have never laughed so much sang so much you are a credit to Tor-quay
the costumes were amazing I could go on and on YOU MUST SEE THE SHOW I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT YOU WERE ALL SHAMAZING

EMAILED TO THE VENUE - Recently while on holiday with GB tours and staying at the Headland Hotel we had the pleasure of visiting your theatre for a variety show on Wednesday 23rd Feb.

My reason for contacting you is to congratulate you and all the people involved on delivering such a splendid performance.

Rarely have I seen such a show full of energy and enthusiasm, the mix of comedy, song and dance especially provided a truly rounded professional and thoroughly entertaining and most enjoyable evening.

Once again, a big thank you to all at Babbacombe Theatre for a great night, good luck in the forthcoming year.

Kind regards, Dave N

GOOGLE - ***** Leesa V. Absolutely loved our visit, Starlight is a superb show, well worth the entrance fee, stunning mix of dances, singers, comedy, well done on cheering up the audience from a dull 2 years of covid!!!

***** Steve B. This Theatre puts on superb shows, I fully recommend going to see Starlight before it finishes in October

***** Sheena L A really great show. I thought it would be very dated but was pleasantly surprised when it wasn't. It was fast-paced, lively and the singing, (the main singers were first-class) dancing and comedy sketches were marvellous. The MC was very good, enthusiastic and clearly very proud of the show (rightly so). Long may this show continue to be successful and hope that younger people will go to see it - they don't know what they're missing!


TRIPADVISOR - ***** BorneFreeSussex, One of the best decisions of our holiday was to visit the theatre to see Starlight. Lots of singalong songs, lots of dancing and my favourite, lots of seaside humour modern and traditional.

The cast could not be faulted and some two and a quarter hours after the show started, we left and were still laughing at some of the gags.

I'd recommend the show and the theatre to anyone who wants a good fun evening out.


***** Margaret F. Had a fantastic evening. Haven’t laughed that much for ages, in fact it made our holiday. Thank you to everyone involved.

*****RCBabe. Absolutely fantastic show. Don't miss a brilliant opportunity to see one of the best variety shows in the South West. Laughed so much my face and sides hurt. Costumes amazing, singers fabulous, jokes really funny, dancers really good. Everyone one of the cast on top form. Can't fault it at all. The best 2 and half hours in a long. Well done. Really impressed. Thanks for a fantastic evening

FACEBOOK - Susie L. A great big thank you for the wonderful performance last night on my birthday. It was absolutely brilliant and faultless. Great voices comedy dancing etc. Such professionals and superb choreography absolutely magnificent so funny haven't laughed for ages like that .. brilliant and faultless

Book Tickets