18 August 2001

From: Louise Cooke
Category: Theatre
Date: 23 August 2001


Falsettoland - Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2001. This 7 strong cast of LIPA students (Paul McCartney's Liverpool's Institute of Performing Arts) really exceeded all expectations in their current production of this challenging piece of operetta-cum-musical this summer. Set in 1990s New York, the Jewish quarter where Jason is coming of age and the all important barmizvah looms, Marvin (Jason's Dad) rekindles his gay relationship with Whizzer, Trina (Jason's mother) has regular breakdowns supported by her new psychiatrist husband and the 'lesbians from next door' regularly pop by to offer another sample for the 13 year old's feast. In amongst this mayhem, Jason listens to his walkman in an attempt to escape the adults' bickering and valiantly trys to learn the words for his all important day. Very human and sensitive matters are addressed with comic timing, maturity and skill and even the coldest of audience members were seen wiping a tear from their eye inbetween the witty interaction between cast members. A truly marvelous production. Strong characterisation and simple set and costume made the performance an incredible experience. Remember the name Stephen Fletcher (Marvin) and look out for it when it, which inevitably it will, comes to London.

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