Home US Bob Geldof’s Live Aid musical Just For One Day divides critics as it’s branded a ‘shockingly tone-deaf tribute to himself’ with ‘flat as a pancake characters’ and a ‘clunky script’

Bob Geldof’s Live Aid musical Just For One Day divides critics as it’s branded a ‘shockingly tone-deaf tribute to himself’ with ‘flat as a pancake characters’ and a ‘clunky script’

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Live Aid, which was originally held in Philadelphia and Wembley Stadium on July 13, 1985, has been converted into a music stage at London's Old Vic (pictured).

Live Aid, one of the most famous benefit concerts of all time, is back… but not as fans know it.

The event, which was originally held in Philadelphia and at Wembley Stadium on July 13, 1985, was converted into a music stage at London’s Old Vic.

Titled Just For One Day, the musical revives the day when artists like Bob Dylan, David Bowie, The Who, U2, Queen, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Diana Ross and more united on stage to lift funds and awareness about the famine crisis in Ethiopia.

The plot of the production, which takes its name from a line in David Bowie’s song Heroes, combines a behind-the-scenes look at how Band Aid and Live Aid came together with a love story inspired by true events.

Last night, Bob Geldof, 72, who organized the original event with fellow musician Midge Ure, was among a host of celebrities at the press night for the new musical. He was joined by his daughter Pixie on the packed outing.

Live Aid, which was originally held in Philadelphia and Wembley Stadium on July 13, 1985, has been converted into a music stage at London’s Old Vic (pictured).

Last night, Bob Geldof, 72, who organized the original event with fellow musician Midge Ure, was among a host of celebrities at the press night for the new musical. He was joined by his daughter Pixie (pictured side by side) on the packed outing.

Last night, Bob Geldof, 72, who organized the original event with fellow musician Midge Ure, was among a host of celebrities at the press night for the new musical. He was joined by his daughter Pixie (pictured side by side) on the packed outing.

With the first reviews, television critics have offered their verdicts; Arifa Akbar of The Guardian said that “the production also encapsulates the apex of the white savior complex.”

Furthermore, Adam Bloodworth of City AM said that the musical felt “tone deaf”, adding: “In another world, Just for a Day would properly interrogate where white aid went wrong over the last forty years.”

Here, FEMAIL takes a look at the TV critics’ verdicts on the musical…

The show features the music of Bob Dylan, David Bowie, The Who, U2, Queen, The Police, Elton John, Paul McCartney, The Pretenders and more.

The show features the music of Bob Dylan, David Bowie, The Who, U2, Queen, The Police, Elton John, Paul McCartney, The Pretenders and more.

Titled Just For One Day, the musical (pictured) relives the day when artists including Bob Dylan, David Bowie, The Who, U2, Queen, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Diana Ross and more joined together on stage to raise funds and raise awareness for the hunger crisis in Ethiopia.

Titled Just For One Day, the musical (pictured) relives the day when artists including Bob Dylan, David Bowie, The Who, U2, Queen, Elton John, Paul McCartney, Diana Ross and more joined together on stage to raise funds and raise awareness for the hunger crisis in Ethiopia.

Claire Sweeney oozes elegance in sparkling ensemble for Just For One Day press night

Claire Sweeney oozes elegance in sparkling ensemble for Just For One Day press night

Arlene Phillips, 80, cut a causal figure in a gray suit and black turtleneck as she arrived at the theater.

Darcey Bussell looked stylish in red pants and a black coat, paired with a multi-colored scarf.

Arlene Phillips, 80, cut a causal figure in a gray suit and black turtleneck as she arrived at the theater, pictured left. Pictured right: Darcey Bussell looked stylish in red pants and a black coat, paired with a multi-colored scarf.

Carrie Hope Fletcher (pictured left) and Tom Fletcher attend the press night presentation at the Old Vic Theater

Carrie Hope Fletcher (pictured left) and Tom Fletcher attend the press night presentation at the Old Vic Theater

Lenny Henry and his partner Lisa Makin looked every inch the happy couple as they attended the press night.

Lenny Henry and his partner Lisa Makin looked every inch the happy couple as they attended the press night.

THE GUARDIAN

Classification:

A little impressed Arifa Akbar’s The Guardian He said the musical had “soaring voices” but “pancake-flat characters” and suggested that viewers might also be listening to “the compilation tape, Now That’s What I Call Music 1985 – or Heart FM at full blast”.

The critic stated that “the production also encapsulates the height of the white savior complex.”

“For its critics, this day sealed a condescending image of Africa as a continent desperate for and dependent on Western aid,” Arifa said. ‘There is some discussion about this, mainly through aid worker Amara (Abiona Omonua), but it is an undigested nod.’

THE INDEPENDENT

Classification:

“This Live Aid musical is Bob Geldof’s tribute to…himself,” said The independent Alicia Saville.

The reviewer said: “The Old Vic musical about Bob’s generation-defining Wembley concert in Ethiopia powerfully deploys hits like ‘Bohemian Rhapsody, but in the end it’s just a massive celebration of the Irish star’s legacy.’

AM CITY

Classification:

Adam Bloodworth of City AM said that despite the entertaining music, “you can’t help but come back to the idea that putting on a celebratory show about an outdated movement given the current social climate seems completely tone-deaf.”

In a withering critique, he added: “In another world, Just for a Day would properly interrogate where white aid has gone wrong over the past forty years.”

But here’s another musical that puts white savior stereotypes front and center. Worst of all, it feels like all these people who stand up and applaud at the end will go home unaware of the plight of impoverished nations around the world.’

THE FINANCIAL TIMES

Classification:

Sara Hemming financial time He praised the “energy” of the production, but said the speech was “often clumsy.”

“The script is often awkward and full of explanations, detailing points that should emerge from the story,” he explained.

“Meanwhile, both individuals and problems have little time to acquire depth or subtlety.”

THE TELEGRAPH

Classification:

The Telegraph’s chief theater critic, Dominic Cavendish, insisted that even the toughest cynic will admire the musical production.

And he added: “One can criticize the moments of forceful exposition or the schematic nature of the characters, especially the sample of anonymous workers and concert attendees.”

‘But as with the day itself, cynicism turns to admiration. Whether you’ve been there, in situ or on the couch, whether it’s your first time or not, prepare to have a smile on your lips, a tear in your eye and a persistent desire to do good.’

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