The Bridge's thrilling immersive revival of this most Broadway of Broadway musicals has been nothing short of unstoppable.

After opening a year ago, director Nick Hytner's juggernaut in-the-round show has enjoyed repeated extensions, and won nods in next month's Olivier awards for choreography, costume, musical arrangements, lighting and best revival - not to mention best actor and actress in a musical.

A recent recasting was a chance to stop by The Bridge to see what's been keeping audiences so thoroughly entertained. Staged with a standing crowd surrounding the action, Hytner has taken a potentially 1950s period piece with slightly tired gender binaries, and turned it into a feelgood party that's pure entertainment.

Hackney Gazette: The immersive show features the audience in the round with some standing in the central pit The immersive show features the audience in the round with some standing in the central pit (Image: Manuel Harlan)

It helps that it's packed with fresh arrangements of Frank Loesser's memorable songs, (I've Never Been in Love, Sit Down You're Rockin' The Boat, Luck Be A Lady) and that Abe Burrows and Joe Swerling's witty book doesn't take itself too literally or seriously.

Subtitled 'A Musical fable of Broadway' it's a heightened slice of teeming, cacophonous Manhattan life. Before we even get to the peerless Fugue for Tin Horns there are vignettes of wise guys at craps games, a boxer training at the gym, rehearsals at the Hot Box nightclub, and punters at Mindy's deli - all beneath a forest of neon signs.

Hackney Gazette: Cameron Johnson as Big Jule in Guys and DollsCameron Johnson as Big Jule in Guys and Dolls (Image: Manuel Harlan)

Audiences can either sit in the round, or stand in the pit where Bunny Christie's cleverly designed runways fluidly rise to chest height then fall as the next scene pops up. How they crack out Arlene Philipps' zinging choreography atop such restricted spaces is a mystery that must involve impeccable timing.

The odd audience member is even dragged into the dual love story which unfolds between puritan Sally Army Sgt Sarah Brown and inveterate gambler Skye Masterson - and commitment phobic ducker and diver Nathan Detroit with his golden hearted Hot Box dancer Miss Adelaide.Hackney Gazette: Director Nicholas Hytner creates a party atmosphere at the Bridge TheatreDirector Nicholas Hytner creates a party atmosphere at the Bridge Theatre (Image: Manuel Harlan)

It's the second story that gets more air time and Owain Arthur (replacing award-nominated Daniel Mays) is an adroit comic hand as a slapstick Detroit, while Timmika Ramsay is a worthy, scene stealing replacement for Marisha Wallace as the irrepressible Adelaide - drawing every eye to her undoubted star quality. 

George Ioannides remains as an unusually vulnerable Sky Masterson, and Celinde Schoenmaker continues in fine voice as a feisty Sarah Brown. Stepping in as gambler Nicely-Nicely Johnson, Jonathan Andrew Hume brings the house down for the multi-encore Sit Down You're Rockin' The Boat.