Avenue Q (School Edition)

Avenue Q (School Edition) retains the fun of the hit Broadway show but tones down the language and content, making it a suitable show for all the family to enjoy. Favourite numbers such as If You Were Gay and Everyone’s a Little Bit Racist remain whilst Trekkie Monster’s porn addiction becomes an obsession with social media. The Internet is for Porn therefore becomes My Social Life is Online, an enjoyable but somewhat disappointing number in comparison to the original. Nevertheless, Avenue Q (School Edition) is not a bland children’s show but rather a musical for the modern family, observing truths about the world as we know it today.

Don’t be fooled by the label “School Edition”. This show is as grown up as any other and ideal viewing for someone wanting to enjoy a comedy without constant profanity.

The young people of Gordonstoun School throw themselves into this production with enthusiasm, with chorus sections (for instance, in Schadenfreude) being particularly prominent. Whilst some singers are stronger than others individually, combined the sound is fantastic and the cast shine. Given the small stage area I was initially concerned as to how the ensemble would have space to move but simple yet effective choreography prevents the performers from appearing cramped. I would have liked to see some clearer direction during scenes when there were fewer characters onstage as at points some of the actors shuffle uncomfortably about the stage. For the most part though the cast remain confident onstage throughout and ease into the performance comfortably.

Although the diction and volume of the songs aren’t always good enough for the audience to hear clearly, the cast have a strong sense of comic timing and good command of the puppets which carries the show to a greater degree. Especially impressive are Victor Flavell and David Llewellyn as Rod and Nicky whose character acting is a delight to watch. Also deserving of a particular mention is Kaisey Elder whose portrayal of Kate Monster is perfectly pitched with an expressive nature that the other cast members would do well to take on board themselves.

Don’t be fooled by the label “School Edition”. This show is as grown up as any other and ideal viewing for someone wanting to enjoy a comedy without constant profanity. If the young cast of this production keep working to improve their performance skills then this show could be a huge success at the fringe and judging by the audience reaction at the end, it’s already on its way there.

Reviews by Emily Dunford

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The Blurb

The version you can bring your children and your parents to! Furiously furry fast paced comedy. Winner of the Tony, Triple Crown for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book, Avenue Q is part flesh, part felt and packed with heart. A laugh out loud musical that tells the timeless story of a recent college grad named Princeton who, with his newly found furry friends on Avenue Q, struggle to find jobs, dates, themselves and their ever elusive purpose in life. This is not your ordinary neighbourhood! Suitable fur all the family.

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