Edinburgh Fringe 2019
The show has at its heart a crossword. Rachel and Ruth would like us to fill in the answers to the clues which are given throughout the show, scrunch up the form and then throw them at the stage. The one which hits Rachel first wins a luxury prize. In amongst the madcap mayhem we get lots of songs – 10 – about things like Pixar and Disney, Fandom and Menstruation Education amongst many other topics.
This is a show that has at its heart a couple of people who have a laid-back attitude to performing. The material is the show’s greatest strength and here we get some wryly observed stuff on wasps, alternative looks – it’s scary to be hairy – your racist nan, the history of glasses, reality TV and phone rage – as well as those mentioned above which are acutely observed and hit the mark.
What misses slightly is the banter between them which can be funny – £20K in technical theatre, and a tax deductible light sabre – there is not enough strength or investment in the dialogue between them. It feels at times either forced or slightly too relaxed – like their awkwardness appeals beyond their own footlights.
The singing and the music is really good, though a few breathing techniques would help the final song and the losing, of the microphone, or it turned down a bit as it was difficult to make some of the lyrics out – would help.
What was also very goo were the graphics and the video content. This was the unique selling point as we transcended death by PowerPoint to life by catching the essence of the show and making it fun. The final prize was also quite inspired, and I think could have had a better finale.
There’s a lot to really like about this but it has the feel of hanging together rather than an equal amount of effort in the graphics and computer content versus the packaging of the show. It felt a wee bit under rehearsed but both Rachel and Ruth have at their heart great potential. It has been partly realised here but there is plenty more that could be expected given more time and I, for one, would love to see where it leads to next.