The excited crowd settles, the opening beats of the classic “I’m Every Woman” starts and out into the spotlight steps the gorgeous Belinda Davids, a performer so impeccable in her singing and impersonation of one of history’s most lauded artists, that you truly believe you’re seeing the late Whitney Houston in the flesh …and that sets the tone for The Greatest Love of All, arguably the best tribute show seen on stage, running at the Artscape Theatre until Sunday 19 April, 2015.
There have been reviews aplenty since the first short run in Johannesburg last year, of course, but nothing, and we mean nothing, prepares you for the sheer star quality Davids exudes on stage. A combination of costume changes, audio visual projections, a live band set and backup singers assists in re-creating the magic of Whitney for the most ardent admirers.
Featuring all of the diva’s bestselling hits when she was at the top of her game, The Greatest Love of All, a Showtime Australia production, sees Davids singing everything from ballads “Run to You”, “Waiting to Exhale”, “Where Do Broken Hearts Go” and pop numbers “I Want to Dance with Somebody”, “Queen of the Night”, “Million Dollar Bill”, “It’s Not Right but It’s Ok, ”How Will I Know and more. This winning selection ensures Whitney fans, young and old are singing and dancing along all night long.
We enjoyed the repertoire so much, we just had to film it (yes, filming during the performance is allowed and even encouraged, just remember to share it to the show's Facebook page:
While some may say that the encore "I Will Always Love You" is the production’s best number, the showstopper is definitely "I Have Nothing", a song that not only serves to underline to the similarities between the two singers but shows that Davids has the ability to match Houston note for note, and even at times, surpass her. With a video of the late superstar playing in the background, it’s a goose bumps-inducing, tear-jerking moment that has to be experienced!
When we met Davids for our Spotlight interview a few weeks ago, we were struck by her humility and genuine love for the star she emulates and wondered if that would translate to her stage performance. It does and is exactly what sets this show apart from other tributes – it’s a heart-felt 3D love letter to Whitney Houston that we’re sure she’s enjoying from above!
The Greatest Love of All: The Whitney Houston Show runs at Artscape Theatre in Cape Town until Sunday 19 April,2015. Tickets are R125 to R290 and are available at Computicket.