Edinburgh Fringe 2016
We arrive in the middle of a karaoke session where the host asks us to sit anywhere. She also asks us to fill out the forms which are not on our table before moving to her spot behind the bar. After a short time one person who enters is followed by another who is late – for their date. The second person has absolutely no idea what is about to happen as this is completely improvised. She has come from her other show where the details of tonight have been texted to her by the director and that is all the help she is going to get. From that point onwards it is chaos but in a very good way indeed.
The idea is splendid but it needs a degree of panache to carry it off. Thankfully the cast, the ones who are part of the company, are well versed in this and though you might be able to spot the pauses and the times when karaoke is used to mark creative opportunities to take stock it is no worse the wear for that.
All characters are great and it is not long before you are completely convinced that this is as it says it is – a very Blind Date. I had Lucy, Natalie, Anna, Anna’s mother and Scott the director take a karaoke turn. The storyline is therefore one which is temporary and I could tell you all about the babysitter and the phone calls or the mother turning up to find out how things were going – she doesn’t know she is the mother until she arrives. Imagine finding out you are someone’s mother on a blind date – I digress. The best line of the night was then, I have never been on a date with the parent before. If you do take the plunge and go expect a different scenario and different characters and maybe mom won’t be there this time.
The concept was very well executed and though the noise bleed form elsewhere in the venue made things difficult to hear and the sight lines were very tricky too it kept everyone onside late at night – no mean feat when you have no idea what might just come next. This was a highly polished piece of improvisation which made things work.
Technically there was very little upon which to make much comment but we did get the karaoke with sufficiently cheesy songs to ensure it was terribly authentic – in every meaning of the word.