Last week I went to see Showstopper! in one of my local theatres, and I just had to write a post about it because I had no idea what to expect and ended up having a real laugh! It’s an improvised musical where everything is made up on the spot – from the story to the songs themselves, and the results were hilarious.
Every performance has the same basic idea – that the setting, the plot developments and the musical styles of the songs all come from audience suggestions, which means that every performance will be completely different (and so very random!) We ended up with a Gotham City-style setting and superhero/villain characters; it was called (very wittily) A Little Dark Knight Music; and we had a range of songs in the style of Sondheim, Chicago, Wicked, Lion King, Blues Brothers and Jason Robert Brown, to name a few.
I was very impressed by the talented cast and musicians (known as The Showstoppers) who had to think on the spot to come up with their lines as well as complete songs. As our performance was at a local theatre we had quite a small cast of 6 on-stage actors and a pianist, but I believe the West End and Edinburgh Fringe productions include even more actors and musicians, and I have no idea how they manage to co-ordinate improvised musical numbers!
The resulting musical was very funny (in a random and silly way), full of in-jokes that musical theatre fans will love, and surprisingly good music. There were even a couple of songs that were so good (despite being completely improvised) that I wish they actually existed so that I could download them!
If musicals and a bit of comedy are your thing then look out for Showstopper! in a theatre near you, or head over to see it in the West End. I can highly recommend it as a fun night out at the theatre!
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