Wednesday 22 February 2012

GBR Occasional Mid-Week Show Review - The Fitzrovia Radio Hour

The Fitzrovia gang
That’s right. A year and a couple of months in and I thought it about time to rock your world with a new GBR feature. The occasional mid-week show review.

This is a result of the 2012 edition of my New Year resolutions. I decided to try and go see more shows, at least one a month. After all, I live in one of the cultural capitals of the world, so it seems a bit rude not to get out once in a while.

In January, I went to see Stewart Lee’s stand up show, Carpet Remnant World. It was brilliant. Just brilliant. Go see it if he’s touring with it anywhere near you.

Last night saw Feb’s instalment of my new show-watching quest. I went off to see the Fitzrovia Radio Hour. Two shows in to the resolution, I got to thinking “if only there was some way to tell people about these shows, encourage them to go see the ones I enjoy and warn them off the ones I don’t.” And then of course I remembered my 2011 New Year resolution, which was to start a blog.

And thus was born the GBR Occasional Mid-Week Show Review. *ta-daaa!*

I’ll keep it short - we’re all busy people and this isn’t a Sunday after all.

The Fitzrovia Radio Hour sees five performers don period evening wear and perform a series 1940s/50s short radio plays in front of a live studio audience. It’s complete with a mind-boggling array of sound effects emanating from all sorts of fruits and household objects.


I loved the idea, so I was kind of predisposed to liking this before I sat down. And I wasn’t disappointed. The performers were amazing. They built on the scripts with off-mike farce. Comical expressions, a sprinkling of slapstick, and a dollop of double-entendres had us chuckling and clapping even when they weren’t holding up the “applause sign.”

My one worry was that it may drag a little. It’s a radio show after all. But the energy on stage was relentless and left me a little out of breath by the end. There was so much going on and the performances were so tight that my eyes darted back and forth for the duration.

I thought I’d love this because it’d be so quintessentially British and period. I thought it’d create the sort of atmosphere that’d have me coming over all Agatha Christie. And it did. But that’s only half the story.

Go see this if you can.

No GBR rating for these show reviews though I’m afraid. After all, they’re not books, right?

No comments: