21 Belvoir Rd
Cheshire WA4 6PE
Phone: +44 7725 234022 Facebook Twitter Instagram Youtube

Heathers The Musical


Following two smash hit West End seasons, a record-breaking run at The Other Palace and winning the WhatsOnStage award for BEST NEW MUSICAL, Heathers The Musical, the black comedy rock musical based on the eponymous 1988 film, embarks on a new national tour.

Westerberg High’s Veronica Sawyer is just another nobody dreaming of a better day. But when she joins the beautiful and impossibly cruel Heathers and her dreams of popularity may finally come true, mysterious teen rebel JD teaches her that it might kill to be a nobody, but it is murder being a somebody.

Our review on Heathers The Musical

Heathers The Musical - Palace Theatre, Manchester - Tuesday 5th October 2021 by Karen Ryder

Our Rating

“How very!”

If you know Heathers, then you know. 

Well I didn’t know Heathers, but now I do and I’m so glad I do, so “How very”, it is. 

Heathers is affected, unexpected and perfectly perfected.  It was obvious from way before the show even began that it had a strong following as audience members were dressed up like the girls on the poster outside the theatre.  It was even clearer when only one chord was struck and the audience went wild – and just to make sure I was in no doubt, when the Heathers appeared (3 “mean girl” type figures all called Heather) the audience went insane.  It definitely felt like I had arrived late to a party where everyone knew each other but it was a party I absolutely wanted to stay at and have someone buy me a drink – though not a blue one! (again if you know, then you know).



Heathers is a tricky little paradox of a story.  It is like several teen movies all mixed together, (such as Mean Girls, The Breakfast Club, Clueless) – yet it is nothing like them at all for Heathers serves its punches with a little bit of poison.  Actually, it is based on its own film, which I haven’t seen either but apparently starred Winona Ryder and Christian Slater.  So why is it a paradox?  Well it follows the teen movie rules – girl (Veronica) feels like a geek at high school and wants to be popular (be a Heather), girl finds a way to get in with the populars, girl then meets boy, girl has to ditch old geeky best friend to remain popular, girl eventually sees the light and reverts back to her true self…… get the picture.



However, Heathers has a dark edge to it, a little bit of grit and depth that isn’t your typical high school story at all.  It takes its own path through the teen angst so for instance when boy meets girl, we see Veronica meet JD who actually turns out to be…….well a little bit unhinged to be perfectly honest and we see the potential of a future Bonnie and Clyde developing.  Heathers deals with tough subjects throughout (suicide, bullying, assault, sexuality and acceptance to name a few) but it does so with a twist of comedy so it doesn’t feel preachy, icky or twee.  It’s actually very clever and quite hard to describe its special nuances that make it’s delivery stand out so I think you should just go and see for yourself because it really is brilliant.



It was exciting to realise that the cast are, in the majority, newbies.  Some are even making their professional debut.  It was shocking too because you would rank them up there with the seasoned stars.  They were all insanely talented so watch out for the following names because these guys are stars.  Rebecca Wickes plays Veronica with the perfect blend of geek to Heather to somewhere inbetween, belting out numbers like it’s no effort whatsoever.  Simon Gordon is engaging and scary as J.D.  He is so convincing you actually feel sorry for him despite his, er………hobbies.  Maddison Firth is fierce as Heather Chandler and gives an equally brilliant comic delivery as Veronica’s conscience.  Merryl Ansah is fabulous as Heather Duke, as is Lizzie Parker as Heather McNamara.  Mhairi Angus plays Martha, Veronicas best friend and gives a complex blend of true emotion mixed with humour in her solo number.  Liam Doyle and Rory Phelan are perfectly paired as the jock due Kurt and Ram, with hilarious comedic (and very athletic) delivery.  Georgina Hagen, Andy Brady and Kurt Kansley complete the main cast – each playing multiple roles, each as convincing as the last.


The quick one liners are plentiful in Heathers and delivered with perfection, such as “I’d ask you what your problem was but you probably couldn’t pronounce it”.  But the comedy isn’t limited to one liners – the facial expressions used to let us in on what a character is truly feeling are genius and help move the story along.  I particularly loved the attention to detail in a slow mo fight scene when the jocks had been punched.  They somehow even got their lips and cheeks to wobble in slow motion from the after affects of a punch.  Hilarious!

There are truly moving messages disguised with a bit of glitz and glamour, such as the song “Dead gay son”.  The audience reaction to the integration of the Pride flag and statements about acceptance and moving forwards not backwards, make it clear that the shows messages do come across, and are absolutely not lost in the toe tapping, hand clapping way they are delivered.



Honestly, this show is so clever.  On the one hand I just want to embrace the fun of it and party to the amazing tunes it consistently throws out.  But on the other hand, I work with teenagers, and I can’t escape the topics that Heathers raises, the battles these teenagers face every day and how very real these things are to them.  I’ve heard their fears and their troubles first hand so also applaud the show for handling these things in such a way that doesn’t mock, doesn’t belittle, doesn’t preach and allows you to have fun whilst trying to understand.  Then just as I’m watching and getting emotional, they send out Martha, Veronica’s best friend, on a motorised scooter to break the tension.  Heathers!!  You’re messing with my head!  Do I laugh or cry?  I guess both.  Though the over riding feeling I’m leaving with is one of having an absolute blast (no pun intended – that will make sense when you go and watch it).  It is most definitely a feel good show with a few lessons learnt along the way, and if you don’t learn any lessons then you are definitely a Heather and not a Veronica.




Due to Manchester’s recent history some may wish to know in advance that there is a simulation of a bomb explosion in the second half.  It is in keeping with the story and is over very quickly.  The tension is quickly broken with humour (unrelated to the bomb) so the humour is absolutely not in bad taste.  


Follow Us
Join Our Free Mailing List