The plush Leicester Square Theatre exudes a warm atmosphere by having their bars adjacent to the seats in the semi-circular auditorium. The stage itself illuminated by deep purple lights reflecting off of the piano creating a very aloof ambiance before beginning the show.
Seth Rudetsky is an American pit pianist, composer of musicals and radio host, the counterpart to Elaine Paige on a Sunday. He is extremely well known for his ‘Deconstructions’ of segments from Broadway songs and shows. His performance in London is essentially a ‘how to’ for other people wanting to deconstruct and wondering what the crucial parts are to making it successful.
He starts the show giving the definitions of his word ‘Amahzing’: the first, something so incredibly amazing, the second, something so bewilderingly amazing. He provides hilarious examples for the definitions by playing a song sung by two different performers comically playing the climax of the song repeatedly. Later, he goes on to talk about Vibrato for the voice and the use of the Button on a piano, also covering a wide variety of uses and models. Although his explanations are all very clear and thorough, the depth of explanation can be patronising at times, particularly because his target audience are ‘stagey/performer’ folk. Another minor downside to this performance was that Seth used some of the same material in his show last year, which could be due to having produced a musical this year and having very little time to update his material. However, similar to before because of his target audience, and the fact he uploads regular videos online, people will have seen the footage and know his jokes.
His music analysis and attention to detail is unparalleled but due to the incredible presentation ‘how to’ style, his intelligence is not noticed as much. Seth would be described as a man that is a ‘fan and friend’ of Broadway stars. During his show the fan side of him comes out a lot more which is necessary due to show, however, he is so intelligent with the content I feel he should be given a lot more credit for what he does.
Seth Rudetsky is not only all the aforementioned, he is also a comedian. His comic timing and execution was superb. Resulting from all the years in the industry he is never short of an incredibly witty comment or anecdote. Predominantly throughout his show the structure follows a plan, however, he injects the show with these stories making his show very casual which cleverly aids the nature of the performance.
Reviewed by Tom Yates