On Thursday night aka polling day, I took a trip up to London to visit the London Theatre Workshop with some fellow theatre bloggers to see a political musical. An idea that really works thanks to some brilliantly witty and sarcastic songs and is pure fun from start to finish.
Set in America in time for the final debate before the election, there are two very different candidates running for president. Buddy (Hans Rye) and Janet (Emily Lynne) – both who have very different approaches in the way that they handle the election and how they would run the country.
Buddy comes across as quite a weak personality, unable to form an opinion without the help of his the help of his red folder containing his opinions and his advisor (Joe Leather). In complete contrast Janet is a strong female figure not afraid to give her true opinion, which could often lead her in to trouble. But both characters are excellently brought to life by Lynne and Rye, who are entertaining throughout.
All of the characters including the candidates respective partners Amy (Jennie Jacobs) and Roger (Arvid Larsen) can come across as over the top at times but are all still brilliantly funny in their own ways.
But despite the humour, there is in fact a very important point that is made: how important it is to get involved with the political process by voting to show what we want to change. This is particularly shown in a musical number in which Robyn (Lucy Grainger) very impressively lists in order the top countries in terms of the number of people who turn out to vote in comparison to America, which surprisingly comes quite low in the list.
One of the main strengths of the show is the sharp and witty songs that have been written and composed by Scott Elmegreen and Drew Fornarola. All of the songs make fun of not only the politicians themselves but the ideas that they stand for such as in ‘The Global Warming Song’, which talks about how Fox doesn’t believe in Global Warming or the ‘Scandal Tango’ which talks about how politicians will go to any length to get into power.
But perhaps the reason why the audience are able to laugh so much at Vote For Me is because it is based around American politics so it is easier to disengage and take it less seriously than if it had been about British politics. But I can definitely see it working with a British politics version in the future.
A sharp and satirical show (which is always going to be a favourite type of show for me and my sense of humour!), it is also an important one that really helps people to engage with the topic of politics.
It is an enjoyable production that has plenty of energy and life about it that really holds the audience’s attention throughout and beyond if the political debate that I found myself engaging in on the way back to the underground is any indication!
So once again thank you to Official Theatre and the #LDNTheatreBloggers for a wonderful evening filled with laughter and political debate!
Vote For Me is on at the London Theatre Workshop until 23rd of May. For more information on the show visit: http://londontheatreworkshop.co.uk/ .