national Arts Festival Banner

Thursday, January 16, 2014


(Melanie Roberts & Marion Loudon)

Sophisticated, cabaret style tribute leaves you feeling relaxed and happy. (Review by Keith Millar)

For a an chilled, elegant and intimate night out, the place to go for the next two weeks is the Heritage Theatre in Hillcrest, to see the return of their very popular show, Yesterday Once More.

The production is a sophisticated, cabaret style tribute to the music of the sensational 1970’s duo, the Carpenters. Comprising the brother and sister team of Richard and Karen Carpenter they are one of the best selling and most influential pop music groups of all time. Their music is beautiful and timeless and as captivating now as it was when it was first released.

Amongst the memorable songs featured are Close To You, I Won’t Last A Day Without You, Top Of The World, Only Yesterday, Rainy Days And Mondays, Hurting Each Other, We’ve Only Just Begun, Super Star, and Sing A Song, as well as arrangements of other artists music such as Ticket To Ride, Please Mr. Postman, Solitaire, Desperado, A Kind Of Hush and I’ll Never Fall In Love Again.

Yesterday Once More features two of Durban’s most accomplished artistes. Melanie Roberts and Marion Loudon.

I have not seen Roberts on stage for some time and was reminded with this show what I have been missing. She is a force of nature. The Carpenters distinctive sound was based very much on Karen Carpenter’s superb lower register. With her powerful and rich deep tones, Roberts takes full advantage of this and puts in a splendid performance, despite battling with a bout of bronchitis. She is also entertaining with her whacky and mischievous banter during the show.

Marion Loudon has the rare ability to sound exactly like the artist whose music she is performing. At times during this show she sounds so much like the late Karen Carpenter that it brings a tear to the eye. She delivers a very polished and elegant performance.

Another highlight of Yesterday Once More is the young star on the rise, Chloe Clark, on keyboards. She does an excellent job of interpreting Richard Carpenter’s style of playing. Her singing isn’t half band either and her moody and emotional rendition of Solitaire is very moving.

Others making up the very solid backing band are the gifted father and son team of Glen and Andy Turrell on bass and guitar respectively, and on drums another young star in the making, Paul Cassells.

Of course any night out at the Heritage Theatre would not be complete without the excellent meal that goes along with the music. For starters, my wife ordered the Couscous Salad with she found light and summery, while I enjoyed a very tasty Chicken Liver Terrine with red onion jam. The starter available was a Butternut and Peach Soup.

My wife was very impressed with the Mutton Curry she had for main course. She described it as mild verging on hot. I thoroughly enjoyed the very creamy Chicken Penne Paste, although it was perhaps a bit short on chicken pieces. Other mains available are Baked Fish and a Veggie Quesadilla. Also on offer is Lamb Shank as a Chefs Special for an extra R63. A selection of desserts is available as an optional extra.

Yesterday Once More is a very enjoyable show. It leaves you feeling relaxed and happy. A must for Carpenter fans and highly recommended for all those who love good music presented with panache and elegance.

Yesterday Once More runs until January 26 with evening shows from Tuesday to Saturday (meals from 18h45 with the show at 20h30) and a matinee show on Sunday (Meals from 12h30 with the show at 14h00). Ticket prices are Tuesday and Sunday R185 pp and Wednesday to Saturday R215 pp. Show Only option is R130 pp.

Bookings can be made by phoning 031 765 4197 or online at