*SPOILER ALERT* Well, that was an Unexpected Twist!

On Friday 10th March 2023, we saw a play called Unexpected Twist. It is Michael Rosen’s rendition of the famous Charles Dickens novel Oliver Twist.

*SPOILER ALERT* Well, that was an Unexpected Twist!

What a trip! Almost everyone in Year 10 at my school (including the ones who are not studying music) went to the Marlowe Theatre in Canterbury to watch a play for schoolchildren (hence several other schools watched it too) called Unexpected Twist, starring various beatboxers, with the music written by a beatboxer called Conrad Murray. Because there were beatboxers, every sound of music was made by voice. That's right, it was entirely a cappella, with nobody playing any instruments whatsoever.

Oliver Twist is set in the 19th century, as that is when Charles Dickens first published the book, whereas Unexpected Twist is set in the present, in a modern school. It features a teenage girl called Shona, who is going through a hard time in her family; her dad is single and has lost his job, therefore he and Shona have had to be evicted from their house, and Shona is at a new school. She fits in and acquires a phone (because she didn't have one at first due to the fact that her family is poor).

I liked the play overall. It was quieter than I thought it would be (as I am quite sensitive to loud noises) judging by the fact that we were sitting very close to the back row. The beatboxing voices backstage were very powerful, and they impressed me, although I wasn't exactly a big fan of how it looked like there was only one location - a school. There was even a character in a hospital bed coming into a school at some point, which I think is silly. I'm not saying they weren't very good at setting it up and I understand that it took a while to set the whole set up, but why put different items in places where you wouldn't normally find them?

Here's my verdict - would I recommend it or should you avoid it? Well, if you're into shows that have different set locations, then avoid it. However, this was a bit like a panto because it had lots of humour and singing, so if you're into pantos, I would definitely recommend it!

Unexpected Twist is also available as a book.

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Gus Payne

Gus Payne

I'm Gus. I'm a (pretty tall) Year 10 student who is studying art, photography and music. I’m doing the Bronze and Silver levels in the Arts Award for music. Here, you can see blog posts on what I do in those music lessons I have with my good friends.

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