Shrek: The Musical

Date 10th October 2019
Society Bath Light Operatic Group
Venue Bath Theatre Royal, Bath
Type of Production Musical
Director David Baxter
Musical Director Matthew Finch
Choreographer David Baxter
Producer Nick Bartley

Report

Author: Dee Way for Delia Lee

Based on the well-loved film, this show included nearly all the elements of the film lightly adapted for the stage.  Newly released for amateur production, what a fantastic production this was. Continuity was very good and scene changes were handled very efficiently.  The costumes looked fantastic, and the enlarging dress for Fiona when she shows her 'true self' worked very well.  Lighting and the sound were very well done, with good cueing.  However, it was the characters, singing and acting that made this show so memorable.

Shrek was played with a wonderful humour and sarcasm, making full use of his prosthetic face. His delivery of lines and singing were outstanding throughout the show.  The donkey was delightfully funny and sympathetic, using body language to excellent effect and playing the fool extremely well.  Princess Fiona was excellent, with very good delivery of script and songs and some lovely use of body language.  Lord Farquaad was a true tour de force in playing the part while kneeling - and still managing to mount a horse onstage!  His delivery of both script and songs was clear and created a wonderfully nasty character. These formed an excellent team in the performance, giving a real sense of the action of the story.

The doubling of the dragon as an onstage person and a puppet worked incredibly well, while Shrek's parents) showed just how difficult it was to get Shrek to leave home!  The young Fiona and Shrek were beautifully in character as these characters aged before our eyes.  The fairly tale characters including were all very well played, with very clear characterisation and excellent delivery of songs and script. I particularly liked the Gingerbread Man on a tray but with a moving mouth! 

The choreography of the dances was exceptional, with the skeleton's dance being most inventive and the tap dancing rats creating a most unusual spectacle! The three blind mice were very effective in their blindness while the three pigs were very well acted.  At the end, the staging of the wedding scene was wonderful, with that mock cathedral window, with the shock revelation of the enormous dragon puppet being phenomenally effective.  

This was a most enjoyable show, very well presented and performed throughout.  Congratulations!