Kate Herbert is theatre reviewer, Herald Sun, Melbourne & formerly for Melbourne Times. Kate is a director; produced playwright (21 plays). Scripts pub. Currency Press. She worked as actor, comedian, improviser & teacher of Acting, Improvisation & Playwriting. Kate was Head of Drama/Teacher, NMIT; Coordinator of Prof. Writing/ Editing, Swinburne Uni. Read her reviews here or: www.heraldsun.com.au/entertainment/arts. NB Explorer Browser doesn't always work on blog.
Tuesday, 3 April 2018
Impromptunes, April 3, 2018 **1/2
MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY
The Completely Improvised Musical
At Trades Hall, Music Room, Victoria St Carlton, until April 22, 2018
Star Review: **1/2
Reviewer: Kate Herbert
Review also published in Herald Sun online on Tues April 3, 2018. KH
A good musical requires a talented musician, cleverly
constructed and tunefully sung songs, and a really sharp narrative with good
dialogue and characters.
In its Completely Improvised Musical, Impromptunes
manages to do the first two items very well, but, on this night, their musical
called Hot Chocolate comes unstuck because of a shabby narrative, awkward
dialogue and inconsistent characters.
After an overture by their versatile and
inventive musician, the show’s title, provided by an
audience member, is the cue for a classic, peppy, musical theatre opening song, ‘Hot
Chocolate, Yahoo!’, sung by the cast of five.
The story is bumpy, but deals with the staff of Hot
Hot Hot Industries that makes hot chocolate, but is also a hotbed of envy,
ambition and lust.
Peter, the brown-nosing executive, sings about hot
chocolate being a metaphor for his life, and the finale is the rousing chorus, 'Life
is like hot chocolate. It's best shared with those you love.'
The songs sound like musical theatre tunes,
complete with harmonies and cheesy dance routines and, on this night, there
were plenty of love songs: a duet called ‘You and I, Me and You Together’; 'Maybe
This Is The Moment', a quartet by two couples; and 'Sometimes Love Makes You
‘Trapped’ is a clever tune sung by all cast members,
and the rapid-fire, uptempo ‘Sugar Song’ is a hoot.
exciting to witness singer-improvisers scrambling to create songs, story and
characters, and you'll certainly get a different show every night, with good
music and capable singers – and the narrative might be amazing on another
By Kate Herbert
Cast of Hot Chocolate: