Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Gutted: A Revenger's Musical

Gutted was the talk of the Edinburgh Fringe. Having never been to Edinburgh I had missed it, and my long-running fear of musicals meant that I didn't go to see the previews at The Riverside Studios beforehand.

Gutted was written by Martin White and Danielle Ward (Dave Gorman's sidekicks on his Absolute Radio show, as well as the creators of Karaoke Circus), and stars Colin Hoult and (for tonight after only 2 rehearsals) Isy Sutie: better known as Dobby from Peep Show.

The story is one of joyful revenge. Sorrow (Sutie) saw her parents killed by her husband-to-be (Hoult) and spends the next hour and a half of the show murdering his entire family. The show had been described as Glee meets The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, with jazz hands as well as inappropriate violence and was an absolute joy.

Photo stolen from Edward Moore's Facebook page.
I met up with Hitch, Misha, Jack Binoculars (if that IS his real name), and Simon at The Montague Pyke. I think Jack may have chosen this as a "Precious Little" pilgrimage as it is now a sacred site where one of the first "pubcasts" were recorded. We treated it with the reverence it deserved and drank beer.

We got to Leicester Square Theatre (seems that all the bigger gigs I go to seem to take place here) and joined a rather odd queue. No one was moving. No one seemed to really be queuing so Hitch and I just went to the front and picked up his ticket and ended up being first to the bar. If we hadn't, the whole night could have been ruined.

Now I have a 6 week residency in seat A14 for the next run of AIOTM so was naturally upset to see someone else sitting in "my" seat. However I was in A11 so it wasn't too bad. I could still keep an eye on it.

"Gutted" has an extremely talented cast. I would happily pay the same money to see any one of them, so seeing so much talent on stage was a treat: As well as the aforementioned Ward, White, Sutie and Hoult (who played the entire Bewlay family) we also had The Penny Dreadfuls (David Reed, Humphrey Ker, & Thom Tuck), Michael Legge, Margaret Cabourn-Smith, Sara Pascoe, Doc Brown, Lizzie Roper, and for all you 90s indie kids out there, Jim Bob from Carter USM.

As this was a concert performance, I think the only reason I could have enjoyed it more would be to see the full play with sets, costumes etc as I did get a little confused as to who was who and may have got lost a little along the way. The original play was backed by a rock band. This time Martin had written a full score with his Mystery Fax Machine Orchestra which must have been a massive amount of work.

Thanks to Martin for allowing me to post this clip of "Pretty Amazing Guy" (sorry for cutting Humphrey's head off but he IS too tall.)

There was a Q&A session after the performance, hosted by Robin Ince, so Hitch and I took some nice comfy seats at the side. Unfortunately I must have relaxed too much, swallowed my cider the wrong way and coughed uncontrollably, soaking my jeans and any unfortunate passers by. Luckily there weren't any. I hurriedly left the main room in a cloud of tears and shame and spent a lovely 10 minutes coughing and choking to death in the toilet. And to my amazement, Hitch actually found this funny.

Jim Bob (Thanks to Edward Moore again)
Colin Hoult and Isy Sutie
(Stolen from Edward Moore)
After the show I met back up with Hitch, Jack and Simon. Unfortunately Hitch had to go and get his train and we spent a little time chatting with Jim Bob. After JB let us into some unrepeatable showbiz secrets, I told one of my own involving Elastica. I'm not sure how this happened, but lets just say "Elastica" prompted Jack to tell us a story about his ex-girlfriend's vagina. At this point I went to the loo and Jim Bob quickly made his excuses and went to talk to someone/anyone else.

I hope Gutted will be back and if you don't like musicals, go and see it. It will cure your phobia as it seems to have done with mine. Also, make a note that The Trap's "Bad Musical" shall be doing a run at The Soho Theatre soon. That's one you won't want to miss!

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