Jeff and Hunter have a dream – and that dream is for their work to be selected for the upcoming New York Musical Theatre Festival. However, the submissions deadline is only three weeks away, and our heroes don’t actually have a musical to perform. So, they recruit some friends and pull off the impossible when their show is selected for the festival. But that’s when the egos start to clash, and everything begins to unravel…
[Title of Show] is a seriously meta-musical which is simultaneously everything you’d expect in a musical about creating a musical and is somehow still surprising. It’s a show chock-full of inside jokes and yet somehow still accessible to those of us not obsessed with musical theatre. It’s a light, fun show that feels joyous but never really truly breaks new ground.
The overall show is fun, however, the constant Americanisms left the audience somewhat frustrated. Whilst this is largely dictated by its New York setting, many jokes and references don’t translate on this side of the Atlantic. These often fell flat and got a minimal reaction from the audience, which is a shame as it feels like it wouldn’t take much work to update references to some that are known both in the US or the UK; or even better rework this to be set in the Westend.
The first half is where the true strength of the show lies and it’s full of energy and plenty of chances to laugh out loud. Unfortunately, by comparison, the second act falls flat. The ballad feels particularly out of sync with the rest of the show and it loses the attention of the audience, allowing the energy to drop in what is overall a well-paced show. This would possibly make a stronger, one-hour musical rather than weakening it with the second half of the show.
This is a musical for people who love musicals or those who love to hate them. It definitely contains some songs worth adding to your musical hits playlists and its charms make it worth taking a chance on. [Title of Show] is on at the Above the Stag theatre until the 10th of Match, tickets start from £25.