Charing Cross Theatre, London – until 8 August 2018
Regular readers will know that my site is all about positivity, and whilst there are many positives with It Happened In Key West, ultimately I felt it a missed opportunity. Inspired by a true story, this new musical comedy left me with so many questions.
Eccentric scientist Carl (Wade McCollum) searched for his ideal women for decades. On finding her she is then lost to him almost immediately as she succumbs to tuberculosis. But the story doesn’t end there…
An intriguing if bizarre story, and the fact that it was inspired by a true set of events makes it even more so. However, I had the overwhelming desire to question the details. To make the audience evaluate possible motives, explore the deep subject matter and such eccentricity is to be applauded. But I felt it over trivialised certain aspects and whilst I obviously don’t want an evening wallowing in grief, the fact that I didn’t seem to have time to appreciate the sense of loss made it, for me, unfulfilling as a piece.
That said the performances are exceedingly good. McCollum as the eccentric scientist makes you believe his performance as does Alyssa Martyn whose pure clear voice is stunning throughout. The movement is precise and captivating in the most part, but a couple of clunky scene changes are a little distracting.
Other noteworthy mentions must go to Sophia Lewis, Johan Munir and Nuno Queimado. However all of the ensemble work as one and for a relatively small space it was an ambitiously large production. I enjoyed the musical numbers with their quirky lyrics and memorable tunes.
Unfortunately this production, for me, seemed confused, in what it is trying to achieve. It has some deeply moving moments, which are snatched away all too quickly and replaced by witty lines, thereby losing its potency. Promises to be a good production but it needs to first find its identity and sense of purpose first.
Jeremiah James, Rashad V. Chambers,
Marylou Rothfuss and Art Lab LLC
It Happened in Key West
a new musical comedy
Charing Cross Theatre
Box office: 08444 930650
Wednesday 11 July – Saturday 22 September, 2018
Monday – Saturday at 7.30pm
Matinees Wednesday and Saturday at 2.30pm
Stalls from £34.00
Balcony from £22.50
A booking fee applies to phone and internet orders; no booking fee to personal callers
The box office is open from 2 hours before curtain time on performance days for personal callers
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