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Review: Bananarama banish the cruel summer at Newmarket

PUBLISHED: 10:57 10 August 2019 | UPDATED: 10:57 10 August 2019

Banarama lighting up Newmarket Picture: ANGELA SMITH

Banarama lighting up Newmarket Picture: ANGELA SMITH

Archant

It could have been a cruel summer indeed if the rain had washed out Newmarket racecourse as predicted on Friday night. Fortunately for Bananarama fans this wasn't to be the case.

Heather Small performed a stunning set at Newmarket Picture: ANGELA SMITHHeather Small performed a stunning set at Newmarket Picture: ANGELA SMITH

Up first on stage was the legendary Heather Small who had the task of whipping up the crowd while the threat of rain looked ever closer.

Small cast an impressive figure in her white jumpsuit, lighting up the stage and commanding it with her presence.

Her set list, which included hits like 'Proud' and 'Moving on Up', was the perfect opening act for the evening; providing much needed energy to fans after a busy evening's racing and demonstrating that a voice like her's never ages.

One of the best supporting acts I have seen in a long time.

80s chart-toppers Banarama at Newmarket Nights Picture; ANGELA SMITH80s chart-toppers Banarama at Newmarket Nights Picture; ANGELA SMITH

After a strong set from Heather Small it was time for Bananarama to take to the stage.

Back in their now more familiar duo set up of Keren Woodward and Sara Dallin, the group were warmly welcomed by the crowd.

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The set was a mix of old and new; with familiar tracks like 'Nathan Jones' and 'I heard a rumour, interlaced with songs from the acts more recent offerings.

A mixture that suited the tastes of the Newmarket audience perfectly.

From the moment they began their set it was obvious that the pair are still happy to be performing together after all these years and still have a great chemistry.

Indeed, Woodward and Dallin were more than happy to laugh about the old days, remarking that some of their dance routines hadn't changed since 1986.

An ever appreciative crowd were more than happy to join in the dancing, much to the joy of Woodward and Dallin. Despite sometimes being overpowered by their band, Bananarama provided an exciting and fun set for the audience which included all of their greatest hits like 'Venus' and 'Robert de Niro's Waiting'.

Personal favourites from the evening included some of their other hits like 'Cruel Summer', which went down particularly well with the audience on the night, and 'Love in the First Degree', an ever up-lifting track.

Their final choice for the audience, 'Na Na Hey Hey', was a lovely way to finish the evening as the pair literally sang goodbye to the crowds.

All in all a fun evening of nostalgia.

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