Young Frankenstein 

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Mel Brooks’ 1974 comedy horror film was popular enough for him to recreate it as a record-breaking Broadway musical. It’s funny, witty and very entertaining!

Dr Frederick Frankenstein learns that he has inherited his infamous grandfathers castle estate in Transylvania. Not wanting anything to do with the family’s notorious legacy, he goes over with the intention to settle quickly and get back to normal. Frederick arrives and meets a variety of characters: Igor is the grandson of Victor’s loyal servant, and is delighted to be able to serve a Frankenstien, Frau Blücher is the stern Housekeeper keeping everything in order, and Inga is the beautiful lab assistant who managed to get the job whilst bouncing on the hay cart. 

Frederick finds the secret lab in the castle and reads his grandfather’s research, realising he wasn’t as mad as everyone thought. Frederick gets sucked into the experiments and with Igor, Frau Blücher & Inga’s help, he creates new life – The Monster. Unfortunately the Monster was given an abnormal brain and begins to wreak havoc with the locals as he escapes the castle. But can Frederick find him and turn the Monster into a gentle giant, and deal with the surprise visit from his fiancé, Elizabeth Benning?

It’s a zainy story with plenty of comedic twists which keep the audience laughing. Both the songs and the score are for big production shows, the Playhouse and the actors were definitely up for the challenge – they smashed it!

The whole cast were utterly fantastic bringing this show to life with it’s Broadway production feel. Each one completely absorbed themselves in their characters, which made it more delightful and hilarious as they all understood their assignment. 

James Bell, who is naturally funny, played Igor the hunchback, with a hump which moved when no-one was looking, was a funny subservient, eclectic, odd character who we all warmed to.

Ben Woodward was cast as The Monster, not only for his stature, but his ability to portray lots of different emotions all through groaning. Emily Sidwell (Inga) and Rebecca Jillings (Elizabeth) were superb as their characters but also had amazing voices.

Joseph Betts played the perfect Dr Federick Frankenstein as the academic who becomes obsessed with his work, yet manages to hold onto his humanity. Harrold the Hermit (Zac Sowter) also makes an funny appearance and we discover that he’s likely going to remain a Hermit as he’s just a bit too clumsy.

Even all the ensemble were amazing – each one watchable as they delved in and out of their different characters, singing and dancing away and looking like they were loving it.

The show is a witty, hilarious, fun story expertly performed by everyone involved. I can’t fault it, this is highly recommended.

Photo Credits Leo Jerome White.


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