Weekend Rockstars

"This is the story of the best week of my life". So shouts the charismatic frontman as the band kick in and Weekend Rockstars, a punchy theatre-cum-rock gig hybrid, takes hold of us with a mighty opening.

The show is certainly well-written, with beautiful poetic monologues that set Terry up almost as a northern, working-class philosopher.

We soon find out that the frontman is Terry, a delightfully likeable cheeky chap played by Marc Graham. Terry takes us on a journey through a week of his life that keeps getting worse with no sign of improvement, showing us how he finds release and happiness amid life's little tragedies. Graham's portrayal is very funny and charming. Moments of well executed humour, such as the duologue between Terry and his Boss as he is made redundant, put a warming comic twist on these tragic turns that really help us invest in Terry's optimism.

The show is certainly well-written, with beautiful poetic monologues that set Terry up almost as a northern, working-class philosopher. Paired with the live music, provided by the other actor musicians, we really get dragged into Terry's mind and this keeps us invested in the character. It is clear that all of the performers are passionate about this production, and none are lacking in musical talent. Different members of the band step forward from time to time to play the parts of different people from Terry's life, such as his mum or his girlfriend. There is also a video accompaniment throughout the production that brings a brilliant sense of realism to the show and provides us with a visual narrative to all of Terry's stories.

Though Weekend Rockstars is a wonderfully unique show, there are times that Terry's monologues do start to deviate from the realism of the production and, in some instances, even become a little dull. Some of these speeches get wrapped up in lengthy metaphors, such as a club warehouse being a church, that increasingly delve into the realms of preachy philosophy and eventually begin to alienate us from the charming young man we have been invested in from the start. At times like these you can't help but think that the production becomes a little self-indulgent with its own poetry.

For live music and theatre lovers such as myself, Weekend Rockstars is a thoroughly enjoyable show. Unfortunately, its moments of deep, poetic philosophy sometimes become a little too much, and we find ourselves trying to stay engaged with Terry's journey, rather than just sharing the ride with him.

Reviews by Alex Hargreaves

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The Blurb

Terry's having a bad week. He's lost his job, his girlfriend and just killed his dealer's cat. What happens when our rocks start to fail us? What do we do when our stars don't guide us where we thought they would? Then it's time to become Rockstars. Made in Hull and proud of it, theatre meets gig in Middle Child's electric and unapologetic telling of three young lives living for the weekend. Written by the award-winning Luke Barnes and with James Frewer's original tracks underscoring throughout, Weekend Rockstars is supported by Hull UK City of Culture 2017.

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