Thursday, 18 October 2007

THOUGHTS: Perfect Pitch

Last night, the RZ had the opportunity to attend Perfect Pitch, a showcase of new British musicals in development. Each night, excerpts from up to three shows are presented as a way for creators to get feedback on their work early on. As these are all unfinished pieces, the RZ will leave some thoughts, but not review them outright.

Lost Boy (20 min.) - This coming of age/boarding school piece is oh-so-English, and you get all the stereotypes here (the athlete, the snobby bully, the quiet brain, the theatre queen) plus a spectre who occasionally steps in to say things in other peoples' voices, guide characters through bits, etc. The tunes weren't particularly incredible, but there's strengths to be found in the characterizations. Sadly, we weren't treated to many book scenes, given the length of the presentation, but there could be a solid work of youth/teen theatre born from last night's staged rehearsal (on book and piano only).

Slow Motion Suicide (30 min.) - The company presented the first 30 minutes of this piece complete with book sequences, and it's very much what one would find at NYMF. Set in a think tank, the employees outsource all of their "mundane" tasks, such as buying groceries and choosing wallpaper, to Personal Liberty, a firm that does it all for them. One employee, though, is starting to feel the corporate world come down around her, and begins to crack under the strain. The songs were more developed here, and we got a four piece arrangement. The book's funny, and the characters are interesting. Hopefully something will come from this one.

All I Want For Christmas (60 min.) - Basically a complete one act, this is the story of a high level banker who hires an actress to play his girlfriend so that he can have the perfect family Christmas. As expected, things go wrong in all sorts of ways, and hilarity ensues with a side of insanity and excitement. The show is already well developed, and ready for a small company/festival willing to take it on.

Where: Upstairs at the Gatehouse (Highgate Road)
When: Nightly at 7:30PM until 28 Oct.
Cost: £10 general admission
Concessions: £8 general admission
NOTE: There are 10 shows in rotation, with two or three running per night in different arrangements. Check the website for details when making plans.
RZ Unofficial "Worth Paying": £10. You get your two hours of entertainment from these, and it's always a worthy cause to support up and coming talent.
RZ Other Notes: The theatre is set up with front and side seating. The orchestra/piano are always on Stage Left, so sit in the stage right centre seats or the stage right side seats if you want to hear the singers clearly. Everybody is unmic'ed for this.

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