NewsRevue 2013

NewsRevue always set themselves a difficult task- that is, summing up a year’s worth of news and satire without re-treading the well-plowed mulch of Mock the Week, Have I Got News for You and seemingly every program broadcast by Radio 4. Fortunately, their all-singing, all-dancing take on current affairs generally lends itself to fresh comedy and the show keeps its cutting edge without necessarily being so.

With minimal props or costuming and only Ed Bussey on piano to see us through the frequent blackouts and set the scene, it falls to the cast to keep the audience engaged and they do a bang up job of it. The four performers that comprise the onstage talent are perpetually energised, racing through a series of satires on everything from the price of train tickets to the Nigella Lawson/Charles Saatchi domestic violence case. Obviously it’s the latter type of sketch that strikes closer to the bone but aside from a few jokes about Savile that brought a nervous edge to proceedings the majority never crossed the line into offense – or crossed it twice, there and back again. Indeed, the show felt sharper when it drew close to that edge, with a series of riffs on the Les Miserables film feeling exceptionally safe.

It’s impressive how up-to-date the show was. While a reference to the royal baby might well be expected, an entire song focussed on the porn-filter announced at the end of July shows a real commitment to relevance. More general recurring themes like the state of the NHS were bolstered by fantastic character acting, most notably from Rachel Born, whose ‘Shirley’ proved a highlight of the night.

Politically, as one might expect, the show leans to the left and though they’re not above mocking Ed Miliband’s nasal tones, that’s a far cry from the hilariously evil Tories on display. The slickly-choreographed rendition of ‘Thriller’ that formed the finale to the show features everyone’s favourite recently-deceased PM in an almost groan-worthily predictable fashion. That and a punchline-less sketch on the police state proved the only dips in a quick fire, pulse-raising race through the year’s talking points that’s enjoyably berserk. While it may not be particularly probing satire, it’s very funny.

Reviews by Frankie Goodway

New Diorama Theatre

In Our Hands

★★★
Museum of Comedy

Jo Burke: iScream

★★
Pleasance Courtyard

zazU: A Fête Worse Than Death

★★★★
Just the Tonic at The Mash House

1 Given Head

★★★
Just the Tonic at The Mash House

Scott Bennett: About a Roy (Stories About Me Dad)

★★★
Pleasance Courtyard

Rhys James: Remains

★★★★

Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now

Performances

The Blurb

Guinness World Record-breaking Fringe favourites return to poke fun at all things topical. A brand new, all-singing, dancing, and satirising show. 'Miss this show at your peril' ***** (WhatsOnStage.com), ***** (BroadwayBaby.com). (May contain horsemeat.)

Most Popular See More

Life of Pi

From £19.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Pretty Woman: The Musical

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets

SIX

From £29.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Hairspray

From £21.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

From £13.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Heathers The Musical

From £18.00

More Info

Find Tickets