Review by Peter McGarry

Peter McGarry is an experienced, independent professional theatre critic who has agreed to review Talisman Theatre productions.
Peter is free to express his opinions for good or ill. The Talisman Theatre has no control whatsoever over the content of these reviews and will not comment publicly on what he writes.

The Musical of Musicals - The Musical! (2017):
If you donít know your musical theatre, this would be like being at a party where you donít share the in-joke.

On the other hand, if you can tell your fringe-topped surreys from your fearsome phantoms you might well savour having the insight.

Here we have four brilliant actor-singers performing their hearts out on a convoluted concoction of mock show songs linked by a slender thread and teetering on the edge of recognition. As the hills come alive, the informed consumer is clearly invited to climb every mountain.

Itís clever stuff, without a doubt. To what degree it verges on clever-dickery rather depends on what tickles your fancy.

Of the five sections devoted to specific composers, the Lloyd Webber bit comes nearest to generally accessible humour with its visual jokes about subterranean opera house waterways, roller skaters and a faded movie star diva. The rest? Well, the opening lyric along the lines of Ďoh what beautiful corní sets the pattern. And what follows is often heavily over-stated.

But director Steve Smith and choreographer Clive Bennett work well to keep things moving and the players, Kim Arnold, Kenny Robinson, Kevin Wing and Val Whitlock, all clearly having a ball, display superb individual ability.

It would be great to see them all in something of real artistic substance.



© 2016 Talisman Theatre