Reviewed on Friday 4th December 2015
First seen at the Union back in March, Michael Burgen's revival of Loserville by Elliot Davis and James Bourne has returned for a second season.
Following a group of geeks as they attempt to send the world's very first email, Loserville features an incredibly catchy and memorable score with a gentle pop/rock vibe. I fell in love with the piece when it opened in the West End three years ago and it is wonderful to hear the music being performed again as sadly a cast album was never made.
In my last review I noted that the cast were often drowned out by the band during musical numbers and sadly this has only improved slightly. It's tricky as in fringe venues microphones aren't usually necessary; however, in this instance the drums are too overpowering. It also doesn't help that certain parts of the score are low and wordy making the lyrics even harder to understand.
New cast member Joshua Wyatt shines as loveable geek Michael Dork whilst Holly-Anne Hull is feisty as Holly Manson, her vocal tone fits the score nicely. James Sinclair gives an impressionable performance as the villainous Eddie Arch. Remarkably Matt Krzan's choreography is spectacular without looking squashed, he has fully utilised the Union's small performance space.
Burgen's production feels far more slick; the overall pace has improved whilst the design and style are spot on. The ensemble cannot be faulted for their dedication to the piece; nobody holds back or shies away from the musical's quirkiness.
I enjoyed seeing Loserville again; whilst it's a shame that the sound levels are still holding the piece back, I loved escaping to the land of geek for a few hours. Loserville is a show with identity which oozes with American high school charm.
Reviewed by Andrew Tomlins (Editor)
Loserville runs at the Union Theatre until 20th December 2015.
Please visit www.uniontheatre.biz for further information and tickets.
Photo Credit: Darren Bell