13 The Musical

Aug 5 2019 | By More

★★★★☆  Heartfelt

Gilded Balloon Rose Theatre (Venue 76): Fri 2 – Sun 11 Aug 2019
Review by Sarah Moyes

Captivate Theatre returns to this year’s Fringe and Gilded Balloon’s Rose Street Theatre with another fun and exciting production in the coming of age musical, 13 The Musical.

The musical, which opened on Broadway in 2008 and ran for over 100 performances, remains the only Broadway musical to boast a cast and live band entirely made up of teenagers. So, it seems like fitting choice for the latest production by Captivate Theatre which is put in on following a two-week summer school programme by the local theatre company.

A scene from Captivate’s 13 The Musical. Pic: Leask Photography

Directed by Sally Lyall and Louise Hunter, the story follows the life of Evan, a teenager from New York City who has to leave the bright lights behind and relocate to a small town in Indiana following his parents divorce. Having had uproot his old life, Evan now finds himself trying to make friends and find out where he fits in the popularity pecking order at his new school.

Andrew Gilbert gives a really strong performance in the lead role of Evan, a sweet and likeable youngster who carries the show on his young shoulders without looking like he feels any pressure at all.

Evan is a young Jewish boy who at the start of the show finds himself torn between inviting the cool kids in school to his Bar Mitzvah or his friend Patrice, played by Annie Knox, a loveable geek who has a crush on Evan but is hated by everyone else in their class.

It’s here we also meet a cast of characters who mirror some of the High School stereotypes familiar from movies like The Breakfast Club. There’s Brett (Samuel Spencer), the popular jock who all girls fancy and his on/off girlfriend Kendra (Mairi Mcleod) who is the prettiest and most popular girl in school. On the opposite end of the popularity scale there’s Evan’s unpopular friend Patrice and outcast Archie (Seumas Cross).

strangely entertaining

Archie steals the show in parts with his comic and energetic portrayal of a teenager who walks on crutches as the result of his muscular dystrophy, which makes for Archie and Evan’s strangely entertaining duet, Terminal Illness, where Evan sings “no one says no to a boy with a terminal illness” at the top of his voice.

A scene from Captivate’s 13 The Musical. Pic: Leask Photography

Musical Director Caitlin Morgan brings together a really fantastic musical score of pop songs and heartfelt ballads in the show. But it’s Brett’s group of friends who perform the most entertaining number Hey Kendra, a cleverly written and acted song about asking Kendra on a date which has the audience laughing throughout. Anna Masting’s Lucy leads the cheerleaders with their pom-poms in the upbeat number Opportunity as she tries to steal Brett from under Kendra’s eyes.

13 The Musical is the perfect coming of age musical – sweet, heartfelt and relatable to anyone who can remember what it’s like to be in High School. Once again, the young performers in Captivate Theatre have shown they can put on a powerful and professional show that is a real joy to watch.

Running time: one hour and 30 minutes (no interval)
Gilded Balloon Rose Theatre, 204 Rose Street, EH2 4AZ (Venue 76)
Friday 2 – Sunday 11 August 2019
Daily: 11am
Tickets – https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/thirteen

Company website: http://www.captivatetheatre.com
Facebook: @captivatetheatre
Twitter: @Captivate_LTD

A scene from Captivate’s 13 The Musical. Pic: Leask Photography


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Comments (1)

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  1. Sasha Baggaley says:

    Saw the show today – fantastic energy and talent from all the cast, great songs and choreography. Funny, moving and a good social message. Highly recommend for all young teens visiting the fringe.