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Urinetown - Springers AOS

Yes, the title is odd, yes the premise and storyline is unusual but this was a surprisingly fun show to watch.

Once again Springers used the small performance space in the Chelmsford Studio to great effect with a cleverly designed set with two levels and a projector on the upper level as well as housing the 5 piece band.

The story revolves around a big corporation charging the poor to pee. Colin Shoad as Office Lockstock introduced the show and narrated our way through the story. Colin clearly enjoyed this role and his ability to break through the 4th wall of the theatre to talk to the audience.

In charge of Public Utility no.9 was Penelope Pennywise. This was played by Deborah Anderson, who revelled in the craziness of this part, her singing was strong and she held the stage very well. Alongside her playing Bobby Strong was Joe Baker – boy has he got pipes! I was hugely impressed with his singing and his vocal abilities. He embraced the pastiche of this show and delivered a very strong performance.

As his love interest Hope Cladwell, Ellie West had a fantastic characterisation as the slightly ditsy blonde and sang beautifully. Hope’s father Caldwell B. Caldwell was played by Simon Brett. Simon is clearly an accomplished performer and relished this comedy role, making the most of it at every opportunity.

My favourite of the night however was Kate Diaz as Little Sally. She had the comedy, the empathy and delivered a fantastic performance.

The chorus work in the show was sharp and together and there were some great cameo performances – particularly Emily Peplow who sang and gave a great characterisation in her role as Little Becky Two Shoes.

The show itself was great fun, my only comment was the lack of diction – particularly early in the show which meant we struggled to understand what was going on. With a show that is not known to the audience its vital that they understand what is going on and I was not the only one who struggled with this as other audience members mentioned that they too couldn’t hear what was being said.

However, this was a fun show to watch and Springers did a great job giving us lots of laughs with the show tonight.

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