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BWW Reviews: HAPPY KARAOKE FUN TIME is a Happy Fun Time


HAPPY KARAOKE FUN TIME has been kicking around for some time now, having been produced in Chicago for over three years and even performing around New York City. Last night, this plucky group of improv heroes just ended their (first) Off-Broadway run at The Davenport. With the goal of "bridg[ing] the gap between NY theater-goers and improv comedians," HAPPY KARAOKE FUN TIME allows audiences to enjoy the opening, and closing, night of a brand new musical every time they perform.

The energy at last night's performance at The Davenport was through the roof. Performing to an almost sold out house, the troupe took the stage with their only rehearsed number. Singing their take on THE LION KING's "The Circle of Life," which earned thunderous applause in the intimate venue. Eager audience members proclaimed the title of last night's show to be RAUCOUS BAUCOUS MY HEAD EXPLODED - THE MUSICAL, featuring Dumpy Grumblebutt, a character named by a Kickstarter donor. With that ammunition in their pockets, the boisterous group delivered an original musical about a lesbian couple (played by men, naturally) and some wayward youths who were excited about their cigarette factory of a Catholic high school's upcoming prom. Unbeknownst to the youngsters, an ancient prophecy foretold their cataclysmic prom, and the nuns at the school were vying to keep everyone safe by not sharing their knowledge of the divination.


The cast of HAPPY KARAOKE FUN TIME created the plot and lyrics to RAUCOUS BAUCOUS MY HEAD EXPLODED on the spot. However, putting a fun twist on musical improv, the score was comprised of popular karaoke songs. So, the lyrics are new, but the melodies and chords are familiar. Throughout last night's show, the cast delighted the audience with surprising takes on songs we all know and love. Some of their more memorable renditions included "You Have to Find the Beat" set to Adele's "Rolling in the Deep," gay Jesus singing "You Are Saved" set to the tune of "Let It Go" from Frozen, and a rather raunchy send up of Queen's "Another One Bites the Dust." Each number was made all the more impressive when the whole cast would jump in with harmonies on the choruses of these tunes. And, as if improvising a musical wouldn't keep things fresh, the "set list," if you will, for HAPPY KARAOKE FUN TIME is always changing. So, you never know what tunes you may hear.

With a run time of about 50 minutes, HAPPY KARAOKE FUN TIME is exactly what its title says it is: a happy fun time. You'll laugh. You'll clap. You'll probably cheer. You may even tap your foot to the beat of the songs. You'll leave feeling great. And, if you're like me, you'll probably be making plans to incorporate improvised lyrics to karaoke classics into your next party.

While HAPPY KARAOKE FUN TIME has ended its residency at The Davenport, you can still catch the show on Fridays at The PIT (Peoples Improv Theater), 123 East 24th Street, New York City, 10010. For tickets and more information, please visit You can also follow HAPPY KARAOKE FUN TIME on Facebook and Twitter.

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From This Author David Clarke