STOP the musical (Ed Fringe) – review

STOP the musical: Edinburgh Fringe 

Reviewed 25th August 2017

★★★★★

This musical was led by an incredibly talented cast and didn’t hold back. It attacked the important subject of mental health. Having suffered from mental health problems personally, this show tackled the issues with conviction and showed that anyone can be affected.

The show follows four people who meet at a bus stop. Chloe (Gemma Lowcock) a uni student, Martha (Annabel Mutale Reed) a lawyer, Justin (Jack Trzcinski) a dancer on his way to an audition and Lewis (Eoghan McNelis) a personal trainer.

Throughout the scenes we find out about each character and how their lives are affected by their own mental health and that of others through some amazing, well written songs. The play skips forward and back in time, showing what may happen for the characters unless they are honest and confront their issues.

I thought the concept was fantastic. Tackling mental health problems such as acrophobia, anxiety, alcoholism, addiction, bulimia and depression head on. It didn’t hold back and at points made for uncomfortable viewing which is exactly the point. Mental health often gets overlooked because it’s difficult to understand and discuss when actually there should be more awareness and people should feel confident to talk about it in the same way as you would a physical illness.

The cast themselves were hugely talented. Each actor committed completely to the role and performed passionately. The acting and emotion shown would not look out of place on stage in the West End. The emotions conveyed were honest and moving. All four actors had superb vocals and acted through the songs to great effect. I captivated from beginning to end.

The use of lighting and well thought through staging added to a slick performance and it was good to have a band accompanying the performance.

Leo Munby and Annabel Mutale Reed have written a compelling musical that is not afraid to tackle confronting subjects head on and with conviction. This show is a must! Don’t miss it!

STOP the musical is at C Venues Venue 58, Edinburgh until 28th August and then is in The Cockpit, London from 30th August until 2nd September. 

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