Showstopper! The Improvised Musical has been making a big impact at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival for the past seven years. After performing in one of the fringes largest venues in 2015 the show has made its West End transfer and has now taken up residency at the Apollo Theatre for an eight week run. Press were invited to see this show twice to appreciate how every show is completely different but somehow I don’t think many people will stop at just going twice!
The premise is simple. Co-founder of Showstopper! Dylan Emery acts as the musicals director, pitching the idea for each show to Cameron Mackintosh over the phone. The storyline and musical genres are up to the audience to shout out and vote for by applause. To give you an idea of how different shows are, I saw ‘Swill’, a musical set on a pig farm and ‘Puck Off’, set in a Fairy Grotto in Northern Ireland. With a band to improvise along with the actors, the audience watch a brand new musical created every night in front of their eyes.
With a rotating cast, there is a chance you will see at least someone different each time you go. Of the ones I watched perform Pippa Evans was the stand out performer in every sense of the word. She never stuttered, had an incredible singing voice and was hilarious in everything she did. Ruth Bratt also added nice moments of comedy to the show and Adam Meggido stood out from the boys with incredible passion in everything he did.
I can’t think of any more torturous a way to spend two hours than being on a stage in front of hundreds of people, having to make it all up as I went along. But these actors are incredibly talented in this field and thrive off of the uncertainty of what will happen next. It is very clever, very entertaining and a unique experience for each audience.
Without a doubt, a must see show in London’s West End right now.
Reviewed by West End Wilma
Showstopper! The Improvised Musical is playing at the Apollo Theatre until 28 November 2015. Click here to buy tickets