Wits School of Dramatic Arts and Wits Theatre are currently presenting their annual musical. Under direction by Gina Shmukler and with musical direction of Adele Strombeck with design by Niall Griffin the students have put together a musical ruvue.
The thirteen members of the cast tell out their stories – or the stories of other members of their ensemble. These stories are much what can be expected of any cross-section of young adult society. Parents who are loving, parents who are not so good at loving, same-sex partners, interracial relationships, love gone wrong, love that’s right … the usual painful stuff of which life is made up. Given the topic, the work is touching.
The songlist is a treat, beautifully chosen and not just standards. We have Once upon a time (Brooklyn – the Musical: Schoenfeld/McPherson), Something (Beatles), In Short (Edges: Pasek/Paul), At the Ballet (A Chorus Line: Marvin Hamusch), Die Vampire Die (Title of Show: Blackwell/Bowen), Beautiful City (Godspell: Stephen Schwartz), How will I know (Whitney Houston), Please don’t touch me (Young Frankenstein: Mel Brooks), Beautiful (Christina Aguilera), I’d give it all for you (Songs for a New World: Jason Robert Brown), I Love You Song (Putnam County Spelling Bee: William Finn) and finally, Seasons of Love Reprise (Rent: Jonathon Larson).
All round the show was slick but with thirteen actors and a pianist on the Downstairs stage it felt very cramped rather than the intimate I think it was meant to feel. The cast, Emkay Khanyile, Roberto Queiroz, Zoe Beavon, Nadia Moreno, Melody House, Catherine Isaacs, Nadia Moreno, Shalom Zamisa, Jacqlyne Titus, Daniel Geddes, Sinakho Zokufa, Justine Barger, Kira Marie Timm, Yamikani Mahaka-Phiri, were all very good and there was some lovely singing and dancing there.
Love, a musical revue runs at the Downstairs Theatre, Wits until 3 August 2013. Booking: http://www.strictlytickets.com Full price = R 70:00; discount price = R 40:00 (students, pensioners and Wits staff).
Tickets are available at the door: full price = R 75:00; discount price = R 50:00 (students, pensioners and Wits staff).