REVIEW: PUBLIC DOMAIN (Vaudeville Theatre)

Public Domain just played a short run at the Vaudeville Theatre as part of Nimax Theatre’s Rising Stars Festival, which is giving a platform to 23 producers who have never had their work performed in a West End theatre.

Following a digital run at Southwark Playhouse, this new verbatim musical, written and performed by Francesca Forristal and Jordan Paul Clarke was composed entirely from the real-life words of YouTube vloggers, Instagram influencers, Facebook’s tech giants, and everyday internet users. It is a blackly comic musical following two teenage influencers; Millie (sporty spice, health guru, buddha bowls – millennial) and Z (GCSEs existential dread, swag – generation Z).

Using video screens, the two cast members appear as their online influencer selves, posting updates about their lives to their fans and online friends that they so desperately crave approval from. But there is a fine line between reality and what we see online and the lines become blurred for the social media stars. A large chunk of this show also surrounds the Facebook Data Privacy court case which saw creator Mark Zuckerberg quizzed about how users data is used and whether or not privacy rules were breached.

It’s a very interesting piece and totally relevant for the world we are living in. Both cast members do an outstanding job with the material and the songs which help to tell the story.

There were some sound issues and some of the images projected onto screens weren’t particularly clear to see but for a brand new musical, the video technology used was very good.


Reviewed by West End Wilma