EDINBURGH 2011: BWW Reviews: SHOW CHOIR! THE MUSICAL, C Venues, Aug 19 2011

Kevin Sherwin

All smiles, wide eyes and key changes, the high school glee club is an all-too-familiar concept thanks to a certain hugely popular and equally irritating, inescapable television show. And so, One Academy Productions' ‘Show Choir! The Musical' doesn't have to work too hard to introduce itself. Even so, the expository opening number is a wonderfully over-the-top, sparkling treat. It's part of a dream sequence though, and what follows doesn't quite ever reach the same histrionic heights.

The story of the Symphonic Sensations is told through the shooting of a TV documentary, 'Behind the Façade', cleverly staged with mirrors for the faux-interviewees to speak into. It's a jolly jaunt, but it's not long before the endless scene-setting dates and unnecessarily specific and not particularly funny talking-head sequences start to grate. This isn't the fault of the cast though, and the performers are uniformly superb. Stand-outs include Sarah Gibbons in her various roles, but particularly as a star struck talk show host, and Brian MacDougall, excellent while playing numerous characters, often in the same scene. Alissa Keogh's choreography is fantastic, and mines humour from moments that are lyrically dry: one simple shoulder move easily elicits hearty laughs.

And indeed, the laughing rarely lets up, with Celine Rosa Tan earning most as an achingly cool musician, but I suspect the mirth is generated more by the performances and production than by the piece itself. Despite that, it's a most enjoyable, gleeful hour.



Family Programme Revealed For Annual Liverpool Theatre Festival Photo
Family Programme Revealed For Annual Liverpool Theatre Festival

Liverpool Theatre Festival returns in 2023 with a brand new date to coincide with the school Summer holidays – and this year the programme features nine family shows to wow youngsters of all ages. 

The New Wolsey Theatre Launches First Associate Artists And Artist Relationship Programme Photo
The New Wolsey Theatre Launches First Associate Artists And Artist Relationship Programme

Six East Anglian artists and companies – Aspire Black Suffolk, Jamie Beddard, Martha Loader, Mae Munuo, The Paper Birds and Spinning Wheel – are delighted to have been appointed to work with the New Wolsey Theatre's Chief Executive/Artistic Director Douglas Rintoul in Ipswich, as part of its inaugural Associate Artists programme celebrating and supporting creativity in the region.  

CRIMES ON CENTRE COURT Will Embark on UK Tour Photo

Award winning producer New Old Friends in association with MAST Mayflower Studios have announced their UK tour of hilarious tennis-based murder mystery Crimes on Centre Court which opens on 04 September at MAST Mayflower Studios.

Cast Revealed For Matthew Bournes ROMEO AND JULIET at the Wolverhampton Gra Photo
Cast Revealed For Matthew Bourne's ROMEO AND JULIET at the Wolverhampton Grand Theatre

New Adventures and Sadler’s Wells have announced casting for Matthew Bourne’s ROMEO AND JULIET coming to Wolverhampton Grand Theatre Tuesday 17 – Saturday 21 October 2023.

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