Date 9th March 2019
Society Alloa Musical Players
Venue Alloa Town Hall
Type of Production Musical
Director Kaye Finlay
Musical Director Steven Segued


Author: Elizabeth Donald

This proved to be a well performed and thought-provoking musical. Good, pacy music and songs that at times seemed incongruous beside the reality of a society manipulated by a capitalist who saw the opportunity of a calamitous water drought to tax the community for using the only source of water, the public toilets. The arch villain Cladwell - a wonderful and ironic name - was chillingly and effortlessly played by George Marcinkieicz. In her own way Kirsty Gillies portrayed Pennywise the collector of the toilet dues, just as mercilessly in her blind loyalty to the man whose mantra of greed was all. Similarly blind in obedience, the difficult dual role of narrator and enforcement Officer Locksmith was in the capable hands of Alan Musgrave and he in turn was well matched in routines with a lively Lesley Kettle as Officer Barrel. In the character Bobby Strong, Michael Coyne showed the strength of character needed to rebel against this process and to endure the pain in deciding to kidnap Cladwell’s daughter with whom he fell in love. She, aptly named Hope, was the ray of hope. In this role Caitlin Smith gave us a naive, well educated and well meant heroine who became the focal point of revenge from the frustrated community and some dark scenes ensued. Other memorable roles came from Leanne Cook as a dominant and colourful Ms McQueen, Richard Cook as the wily Fipp and the poor folk - Rob McDermott as Strong’s father and violent Harry, and Little Sally and Little Becky Two Shoes, namely Kat McGuigan and Louise Stephenson.   But everyone was strong. Singing was true and diction was clear - important when following this story matters so much. The chorus worked well together and the dance interpreted the sense of the script, culminating for me in the cleverly orchestrated ‘Snuff that Girl’. Built by their team the set reflected the bleakness of the situation and outlined visually that the elite were above and the poor were down.  The place and costumes could be anywhere and anytime. Dark humour came across as did the raw emotion of rebellion. This was not an easy show to portray but the company did it and themselves justice. Well done.