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Posts Tagged ‘James Oban’

The conceit of this show by Yiannis Koutsakos, James Oban & James Rottger is that we’re at the opening night of a Britney Spears bio-musical called Oops I Did It Again (with Sheridan Smith as Britney & Michael Ball as her mum!) in the flagship London theatre of a giant corporate chain owned by a larger-than-life impresario; but we’re front of house with the ushers while the show is being played offstage. It’s a clever idea.

Packed full of (up-to-date) musical theatre references and in-jokes (including a cheeky recycling of The West End Whingers re-naming of Love Never Dies as Paint Never Dries), the show follows the fortunes of five wannabe actors and their bullying failed opera singer boss. A gay relationship is threatened as one decides to seek fame in Austria (cue lots of jokes about other places beginning with A) and a straight relationship is formed as pretty boy Stephen falls for new girl Lucy (who has a secret). Starstruck Rosie is obsessed with, well stars – and selfies. It’s all good fun and it’s very well performed by a cast of familiar fringe faces. I particularly like the way they use the characters natural home i.e. the auditorium aisles. It’s stronger lyrically than musically, but the songs are perfectly acceptable.

This is it’s second outing at the Charing Cross Theatre (which seems to have become a second home for fringe musicals, with previous transfers from the Union and the Finborough) after a first showing on the fringe. The last run was as a late-night show and I couldn’t help feeling this might be a better slot – without the superfluous interval in what is only an 80 minute show.
If you like musical theatre, get a group together and have a couple of drinks and you’ll probably enjoy yourselves.

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