REVIEW: Eugenius! (The Other Palace) ★★★

The Other Palace celebrates its first birthday with a full production of Eugenius! following a well-received concert performance at the London Palladium last year. The show is a new British musical written by Ben Adams and Chris Wilkins inspired by the films and music of the 1980s.

Nerdy Eugene dreams of a distant world of superheroes, his stories might just hold the key to Hollywood success if he can break through his fear. We follow his journey from schoolground bullying to the bullying of Lex, the Hollywood producer. Will his friends Janey and Feris help him to see through the glitz and come back to earth?

The cast bring the necessary high energy to the production, the chorus are kept busy playing a range of roles and the main characters blast out the power ballads. Liam Forde does a great job of bringing Eugene to life, following his mother’s advice, “Don’t Shoot for the Stars, Shoot Higher”. Laura Baldwin and Daniel Buckley put on strong performances as Janey and Feris. Ian Hughes embraces the role of Evil Lord Hector in his fabulous purple costume. Cameron Blakely as Lex and his assistant Theo played by Scott Paige show the darker side of Hollywood. Shaun Dalton and Melissa James do a great job as the actors cast as Tough Man and Super Hot Lady.

The more adult references didn’t always land well and some of the Hollywood sections felt awkward given the recent revelations about abuses of power. If you’re a fan of eighties power ballads and enjoy spotting movie references then you’ll probably enjoy Eugenius! But for me, the laddish, sexist humour should have been left in the eighties.

Reviewed by Rhiannon Evans
Photo: Pamela Raith


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