THIS was always going to be a difficult show to sell to the likes of me, who was a stalwart fan through my schooldays, right up to the period when his manager Col. Tom Parker steered the phenomenon that was Elvis, into a series of deeply unappealing movies which debased his talent and made him look a bit silly.

Steve Michaels is a talented tribute artist from Canada; he has a look of Elvis about him and his singing voice has a similar wide range that sounds authentic. He’s on-stage for the entire two hours and does a first-rate job with forty songs sketching in a career that spanned twenty years; his backing musicians are good too, producing a satisfying sound whose bass notes vibrate through your very bones.

Forty songs is a lot to take in, particularly when there’s not much in between as the Elvis story unfolds through snippets of conversation between ‘the guys’ – his growing resentment of the direction Col. Parker is taking him, and the disenchantment of wife Priscilla. The desperate need for reassurance before his 1968 ‘Comeback’ broadcast for NBC and his massive gig at the International Hotel Las Vegas gives some insight into the real person, and there’s a nice little joke in there about Tom Jones which sounds authentic – reputedly Elvis was a funny guy.

All in all it’s a rocking good evening’s entertainment, with many of the audience on their feet at the end dancing to ‘Jailhouse Rock’.

Sue Heath