Friendsical: A Parody Musical About Friends: Assembly Rooms, Music Hall, Ed Fringe.
Reviewed 21st August 2019
Everyone loves Friends right? Well then, surely Birdbrooke Entertainment Ltd have the chance of a sure fire hit with their latest show Friendsical. The new parody musical, inspired by the iconic TV show, features all of the classic friends characters along with countless original songs based on iconic parts of the hit 90’s show. Friendsical is a 90-minute romp through ten seasons of Friends, mostly focusing on the on/off relationship of Ross and Rachel. The cast are brilliant throughout. Each character is played well with the mannerisms and traits that we all love. Thomas Mitchells as Chandler is particularly impressive, as is Ally Retberg’s energetic Phoebe. Jamie Lee-Morgan has mastered Ross’s mannerisms to a tee and is almost as funny as David Schwimmer, who originated the role. Even fan favourites Gunther and Janice get their chance to shine during this parody musical. The only character who feels a bit neglected behind was Joey, played by Jordan Fox. At times it feels like the show forgets that Joey exists and it’s a shame he is not utilised more.
The original songs, by Barrie Bignold, are catchy and fun with cleverly written lyrics. The fact that the songs often take the mickey out of the show itself works in its favour and the repetitiveness of the lyrics makes the songs catchy and memorable.
What makes this show a must for Friends fans is its ability to jam-pack the show with so many references and direct quotes from the hit TV show. The premise of Ross creating a musical about his own life story and relationship with Rachel is a good idea in theory, but doesn’t always work onstage with the musical mostly becoming a repeat of the events we know and love from Friends. However, the witty and funny lines from Friends are delivered well and the whole piece is put together by Miranda Larson very cleverly to make the most of all stage time. Whilst it does not offer anything particularly new, as a Friends parody it is fantastic and a must see for Friends fans.
Friendsical will be touring the country after their stint at Ed Fringe. Check below for upcoming dates and venues:
DERRY Millennium Forum: 28 – 31 August 2019
NEWCASTLE Northern Stage: 3 – 7 September 2019
KINGSTON Rose Theatre: 9- 14th September 2019.
MALVERN Festival Theatre: 16 – 21 September 2019
BLACKPOOL Grand Theatre: 23 – 28 September 2019
WORTHING Pavilion Theatre: 1 – 5 October 2019
CHELMSFORD Civic Theatre: 14 – 19 October 2019
SOUTHAMPTON Nuffield Theatre: 21 – 26 October 2019
CROYDON Ashcroft Playhouse: 28 October – 2 November 2019