The whole show is one massive throwback to a time when Cosmo magazine’s advice was sacred, the cabbage soup diet was the latest fad, and smoking indoors was a thing. The four actresses (each present on stage throughout) do a great job of capturing the essence of the era, although did let slip a few anachronisms (were selfies and ‘oh my days’ around in the 90s?)
The plot is very straightforward and follows the post-break up trauma of sweet and soppy Jess (Natasha Granger, co-writer) and her induction into the simpler world of pre-Tinder speed-dating. Her trio of feisty friends are convinced that a swift rebound is the answer (whilst asking repeatedly ‘so tell us what you want, what you really really want’). There’s self-confessed sex addict, Charlie (Eliza Hewitt-Jones) giggly hopeless romantic, Amanda (Jessica Brady) and quirky Scotswoman, Molly (Kerrie Thomason, co-writer).
The format is essentially Mama Mia on steroids in terms of the dialogue revolving around the lyrical narratives of 1990s pop songs. Some were more cleverly woven in than others – whilst Christina Aguilera's ‘Genie In A Bottle’ and ‘Man! I Feel Like A Woman’ (Shania Twain) were belted out in full gyrating glory, ‘What’s Going On’ (Four Non Blondes) was slipped into a club loo queue conversation so subtly you almost miss it.
Each actress assumes her role with gusto and their mastery of very minimalist staging is testament to their individual charisma, group chemistry and the strength of the writing. All four performances are tight and polished - whilst remaining versatile and not averse to the odd bit of improv.
This is a show that revels in its own silliness and fun. Its raw energy and irresistible humour is characteristic of shows that do well at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival (it was a sell out in 2015 and returned for a successful re-run this summer). The intimacy of the Kings Head Theatre will certainly continue the spirit of the Fringe in London as it ensures that the audience are heavily and enthusiastically involved from the get go.
If this sounds like the sort of raucous indulgence you’re in need of this Christmas then go on, Say You’ll Be There.
Click here to read more of our suggestions for Fringe Theatre in London this winter.
|What||Pop musical comedy '2 Become 1', the Kings Head Theatre|
|Where||The Kings Head Theatre, 115 Upper Street, London, N1 1QN | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Angel (underground)|
13 Dec 16 – 07 Jan 17, 9:15 PM – 10:15 PM
|Price||£15.00 - £18.00|
|Website||For more information and booking|