BWW Reviews: MIRANDA SINGS, Leicester Square Theatre, September 9 2013
Miranda Sings is a very modern creation indeed. The comic alter ego of performer Colleen Ballinger, one of a growing number who can legitimately cite "YouTuber" as their career, 'Miranda' has accrued millions of video views over the past five years. Her popularity seems to be growing too, if this week-long stint at the Leicester Square is anything to go by.
Her fanbase ("Mirfandas") is a devoted bunch, too; many attended this first night of the run in some kind of costume - usually incorporating Miranda's trademark red lipstick smeared across their faces - and they revel in every eyebrow twitch, vocal wobble and newborn-deer awkward dance move they're presented with.
While some may sneer at the very notion of people making their living from making online videos, there's no denying that Ballinger is an excellent performer. As herself, she comes across as being immensely likeable and has a lovely, tuneful singing voice which deserves its own time in the spotlight.
As Miranda she's hilarious, and I was struck on several occasions by what an accomplished creation the character is - with her own vocabulary, idiosyncrasies and bizarre (not to mention increasingly sinister) backstory, you've never seen anything like her and the commitment with which Ballinger embodies this strange, strange girl is nothing short of admirable. Bridging both personas, the moment she transforms into Miranda, on-stage and mid-song, is an absolute joy - I'd struggle to recall hearing an audience erupt to such an extent, and I couldn't help but join in.
The material isn't always as excellent as Ballinger's performance - the extended comedic interludes lag here and there and I really could have done without a pitchy appearance by some bloke from Dancing On Ice - but all is forgiven with just one of Miranda's many ludicrous mannerisms.
A very funny evening in the company of one of the web's most entertaining and unique characters - not to mention the tremendous performer behind her - Miranda Sings Live is very much worth watching (FAO much of the audience: by this I mean through your eyes as opposed to your phone).
Ridiculous and recommended.