Never has the saying, ‘no two shows are the same’ been more appropriate than when describing Showstopper. One could watch every performance of the show and see something completely different very single time and that is the beauty of it. Yet despite the fact that it is being completely improvised and made up on the spot the entire show feels incredibly professional and there is an amount of disbelief as you try and fathom how on earth this is unfolding in front of your very eyes.
Each show begins with the ‘writer’ coming on stage and answering a call from their ‘producer’ demanding a new musical within a few hours. With the help of the audience a setting for the show is picked, as well as a title and some musical styles and then the show begins. The show I saw was ‘Let’s go Spy a Kite’ a thrilling tale of an MI6 agent who is on a mission to stop his arch-nemesis a Russian Mother who only wants to do the best by her daughters (and capture valuable intel using a kite in Sussex to help with a Russian takeover). Each time the two have come face to face she had always been able to seduce and beat him, leaving the question of who would win this time?
Each member of the company is incredibly talented, many of whom have to switch characters multiple times and did so with ease. They are all of course very funny people and you will sit through the show with a huge grin on your face as they tell the story for that night. Each moment is laced with comedy but it also has the heart of musical theatre to it and they clearly all love what they are doing. They effortlessly create a show and story with all the complexities one would expect of any piece of musical theatre completely on the spot and the story they create easily rivals many of the shows playing in the West End.
The music as well is created there and then and this shows the talent of the band as they are simply giving a musical style and they run with it to create great music. The cast follow along creating improvised lyrics which when the two are put together make songs that could easily be found in the show the style has been taken from. This is a truly incredible and talented group of people who come together and create an amazing piece of theatre.
Showstopper is a show that will be easy to return to time and time again. I can honestly say I have never laughed so much before during a performance and I left with a huge grin on my face. I can guarantee that you will walk out knowing that you have just watched something incredibly special and unique, with perhaps maybe a hint of sadness knowing it can never be seen again.
Showstopper! plays select dates, tickets for which can be found here: http://www.showstopperlondon.com/
Image not mine, credit goes to http://www.showstopperlondon.com/