RAW: A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum – 4K

Adelaide is most fortunate to have a theatre company devoted to musicals like the Gilbert and Sullivan Society of SA. Not only devoted to that genre (which is enjoying a surge in popularity over the past five years or so) but capable of delivering a great show as well.

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum is their latest, opening last night at the Scott Theatre and running til 28th May, and it allows them to use again gear from their last sandals and tunics offering, Jesus Chris Superstar.

The story is of course fairly stupid, with slaves desiring their freedom, men behaving with supreme hubris and love triangles that expand out to octagons it seems at various points. The play is based on a book by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbart with music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. (With this reviewer being rather more of a fan of old style musicals, I have to say this lyric and music combination exceeds the merits of Stephen Schwartz’s current work in Adelaide Wicked.) If you haven’t seen this play before think Pirates of Penzance on dry land.

Simply dominating proceedings is Nicholas Bishop as Pseudolus, the master mind of the various games going on. His energy, comic timing and presence hold the show together. James Nicholson as Hero, the male half of the love interests performs well though I am unsure whether that tunic is all that flattering given his legs. The focus of his attentions, Philia – the virgin – is delightful.

The first half is both long and tends to plod a bit but the second half makes up for any half time misgivings when the soldiers / eunuchs get very silly and the courtesans are a pleasure to behold for both eye and ear before a very funny ending with Miles Gloriosis (Peter Hopkins) front and centre in a nice cameo.

Apart from a moment of wind section paucity of sound early on, the orchestra led by James Clark is spot on.

A very talented and experienced cast, all with great voices, lead newer members along their acting journey in a production of top quality and enjoyment. Can’t afford Wicked or inspired to see more?  Then get to A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.

Kryztoff’s rating – 4K

See Kryztoff’s other review and profiles in our monthly mag at: Kryztoff\’s On-line Magazine

1 comment

  1. You have got to be joking. 4K! It was totally bad. Not funny. Don’t put Wicked and that show in the same sentence.

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