Bare follows a group of students at a Catholic boarding school as they grapple with issues of sexuality, identity, and the future. As the group attempts to put on a musical production of Romeo and Juliet, tensions flare, self-doubt simmers, and God’s path seems more difficult to find than ever.
This coming of age tale is more of a rock and roll musical than an opera and although the story might seem basic on the surface, it goes into realms you may not expect. The opening of this production suffered from some initial sound issues resulting in the audience losing l lot of the lyrics and therefore some of the story as the band drown out the vocals, thankfully this improved throughout the show. However, there were times when it felt like the performers were holding back on their vocals, making it hard to understand at times even from the front rows. It’s a show that only really starts to pick up energy halfway through where it finally gets into its stride.
The layout was sadly a little basic for what is usually expected from The Vaults which is normally so immersive and innovative when it comes to their staging. I’ve never been so uncomfortably close to other audience members and the long catwalk style staging suffered from sightline issues and the shape didn’t add anything to the performance. The movement direction was really dynamic and the humour in the show is laugh out loud funny. Georgie Lovatt is a real stand out in the role of Nadia in both musical talent and performance
The show improves as it continues and it does have some real charm which develops throughout. The ending is really an emotional moment and brought a tear to my eye as the show is brought into contrast with real-world LGBT youth issues.
Bare: A Pop Up Opera is on at The Vaults until the 4th of August, tickets start from £24.50.
Tickets were given in exchange for review, all words and opinions are my own.