Review: Showstopper! The Improvised Musical

No one knows exactly what to expect from an improvised musical, but if you see the Showstoppers at these year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival you can guarantee a brilliant evening’s entertainment.

The audience makes suggestions for setting, title, musical influences and the occasional plot point, then the Showstoppers run with it. I saw a bizarre, hilarious musical set in Buckingham Palace’s laundry room called ‘Clean Elizabeth’ – who knows what you’ll see? Ours had a reference to Harry Potter (genius) and some catchy songs that I actually remember a few lines of days later. My face hurt from laughing and smiling by the end!

There is a narrator of sorts, writing the musical with our help, who provides the link between the audience and the cast. From time to time he would stop the show to direct it a certain way, or allow the audience to make a suggestion, or simply to make a funny observation. Near the end he commented, ‘Now this sounds like a finale song, but as I still have no idea what’s going on we are now going to have a scene where all is revealed!’ Then the look on the actors’ faces is hilarious as they try to think quickly. They’re ridiculously talented.

Be warned – the venue is WARM. It’s held in Teviot, the Edinburgh uni union, and a wall of heat hits you as you walk in. However, it’s testament to how engaging the show is that I forgot within minutes of it starting.

Showstopper! The Improvised Musical is selling fast at this year’s Fringe, so if you’re thinking of going, get tickets now. If you hadn’t thought about going, you should!

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