Thursday 13 July 2017

Review: Osteria Dell'Angolo, Westminster, and Sister Act with Live Gospel Choir

If you ever get the chance to see a movie with a live orchestra or choir, I highly recommend it. There's been a whole host of these events over the past few years, where you watch a film on a big screen (usually in a theatre, or church) and the soundtrack is played live over the top of the movie.

I saw the first new Star Trek film at the Royal Albert Hall a couple of years ago (a while after the film first came out), with a full orchestra - and a special guest appearance from JJ Abrams who was in London at the time filming Star Wars. I never realised quite how much orchestral music was in Star Trek until I experienced this- it was well worth the £50 or so ticket price.

When I saw something similar - but very different - advertised for just £20 a ticket I jumped at the chance and invited my friend Ros. This time the setting was a church in Westminster, central London, and the movie was Sister Act - with a live gospel choir.

I've always loved Sister Act and the soundtrack in particular. It started with a high-energy warm-up that wasn't quite what I was expecting  - I know gospel is about praising the Lord but I was in the probably fairly large non-religious segment of the audience - but it was great to see the young people's passion.  I read later they were a group called VM and New-Ye who were MOBO award nominated which probably explained the enthusiastic reception from some of the crowd.

The 35-strong gospel Choir who accompanied the film were very good,  with various soloists and small groups taking it in turns as well as the full choir. My only disappointment was that there wasn't more music in the actual film for them to sing along to!

As we were going straight from work Ros found a restaurant for us to have dinner beforehand called Osteria dell'Angolo nearby in Westminster which had an elegant but slightly stuffy feel to it. We started with a selection of breads and breadsticks with oil to dip them in.

For my main course I chose a filled ravioli pasta with crab which was lovely; a fairly light dish so I decided to indulge in dessert as well and had the semifreddo - described as an almond nougat parfait with chocolate sauce. It was very good and service was prompt so we finished just in time to see the show.

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