If you’re stopping by the Showstoppers, then you need to come armed with three things: a ticket, a theme, and a favourite musical. In return, the Showstoppers will bash out a bit of musical-theatre brilliance and you won’t be left short-changed.
Now, I say “bash it out” because it is literally crafted on the spot, before your eyes. Despite the impromptu nature of the show, an improvised musical is an artform which requires much preparation. The Showstoppers really know their stuff when it comes to the classics; they’ve mastered the plotlines, songs, dance, routines and gags from the golden oldies. Then, with a little help from the audience, they make it their own.
You’ll need a theme because that will be your show. You’ll need a musical because that will be your score. And you’ll need a ticket because a smash hit five year run at the Fringe suggests that it’s going to be a sell out.
The Showstoppers knock out a different show every night so this reviewer doesn’t need to worry about plot spoiling. So let me tell you that the Showstoppers gave me a musical by the name of Bunny Tails. It was set in the Playboy mansion, the indomitable Hugh Hefner died and an old Bunny Girl discarded her plastic breasts in pursuit of true love. An absolute highlight was the pool boy performing interpretive dance.
Improvisation means that there might be a dud song or a flop gag. Due to the nature and theme of Bunny Tails, there may have been moments of feminist lip pursing (from myself). Frankly, if there is, five minutes later it will be forgotten about because such an accomplished group can’t fail to impress.
Go see the Showstoppers knock the glittery stuffing out of musical theatre while you can.