Jamie Blake

‘I didn’t mean to fall in love’ says the character Jamie Blake at the microphone. These are the opening lines of this production, and, yes, one of the most clichéd and formulaic phrasings of all time. Don’t get me wrong, clichés are fine if treated in a new and original way. But in this production they are not.Focusing on a group of teenagers, but most particularly on the play’s title character, it shows Jamie Blake falling in love for the first time but also messing it up as he sleeps with other girls. This is a bit of a problem in itself as the reasons for Jamie cheating on his girlfriend are never made clear and he never comes close to understanding his actions, which is frustrating. There is nothing appealing about his character, there are no layers or depth, he is just a teenage kid and is also quite unlikable.This production is also trying too hard to be a story about, and for, the kids of today. The characters indulge in obscenity for no good reason and yes, there is the morning after scene where Jamie is topless - but it feels as if these are devices which have been used to ‘get down with the kids’. Ultimately, the script is clumsy, it feels like a bad episode of Skins, which is a shame as it is directed and choreographed well and the premise and style of the piece are quite inventive. A group stand in a half circle at the back of the stage, some singing, some beatboxing, but all providing the soundtrack to the piece. In fact, the music is the best thing about it. The dreamy Rhys Lewis sings great, catchy songs and his voice is both soulful and pop. The ending is thoughtful and questions the validity of the whole piece. My advice? At least buy the soundtrack.

Reviews by Coco Creme

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The Blurb

Can you rewrite your own love story? A tale about love and the lies we tell to control it. A new play infused with live music and dance. 'Ravenrock are something special... truly inspirational!' ***** (FringeReview.co.uk).

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