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Monday, 5 December 2016

Blogmas #5: The Clockmaker's Daughter| Revival Review

Holy Clock! 

A brilliant performance from all on the BA3 Musical Theatre course at Trinity Laban, Greenich. In it's first London revival dark faerytale, The Clockmaker's Daughter created by Webbon&Finn was once again wound into life! 

Powerful vocals shone from star of the show, Lucy Elson who played an almost child-like Constance who, created by a heart-broken Clockmaker, Abraham (Elliot Coombe) with all good intentions and innocence learns to fit in among the strong chorus of villagers of Spindelwood. Although more accentuated robotic movements were needed as Constance sprang to life during the song Impossible, Elson's vocal range was outstanding as she effortlessly took on Webbon&Finn's difficult and whimsically brilliant score with charm and later on, feist when she confronts Abraham- that note as she sung 'Alive' in song, Raise a glass was heart-stopping! Coombe portrayed a fatherly figure whose love for Constance grew selfish. His mysterious character contrasted well with the perky villagers although the slight european accent was a little odd against the strong yorkshire accent adopted by the rest of the cast. Tom Ramsey's opening vocal in The Turning of the Key was spine-tingling! He played a lovable, endearing Will- his stilted walk at the start of the show was subtle enough (not to give away too much) and contrasted well to his youthful spritely self. Special mention to Lori-Jane Mclare whose rambunctious Ma Riley gave punch and drama to the show. She kept in character throughout with confidence and a slight air of Joanna Lumbly's Aunt Spiker; a very feisty portrayal.

A slight let down for this revival was the set, granted it's a drama school production with the performers at the forefront of the show but there was a missed opportunity. The original production was staged in a small space that was transformed into a Steampunk styled set which gave the show a solid identity. This time we have Laban Theatre's expansive stage that looked like the contents of a storage unit. The lack of set worked in creating swift scene changes and platforms were cleverly created with the use of ladders and benches. However Time is the overriding theme of the production and Amy Yardley's set clashed and confused time periods with Edwardian dress alongside a 'modern' non-descript time, complete with random 80s over head projector amongst Abraham's otherwise old-fashioned paper scrolled technical drawings. Perhaps an artistic decision but one that didn't work for me. Jenny Arnold's choreography stood out in this production, using all the space available creating the hustle and bustle of Spindelwood successfully. Chloe Kenward's lighting design was very atmospheric, superbly transforming the otherwise empty set. More light projection may have worked well in the rooftop scene but the twinkly chorus lights were a lovely touch. 

The motley crew of villagers were all effective in their chorus roles, each one with their own story and personality. The harsh clashing, chilling harmonies rang out clear and crisp as they sang and soared over the high notes in the score. We will definitely be seeing these talented performers on the West End in the near future! 

Thank you so much for inviting me to see the production. It was so great to see it again! I love the musical- the story is dark, chilling, poignant and deserves more recognition! The score is gorgeous and I really hope to be able to see it and/or hear it again! Please bring out a soundtrack- hint hint. 
See my original review HERE

For more December Blog Posts click on the cards in my Advent Calendar: HERE

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