Tribute to Rock is just that, it is a lovingly crafted tribute to some of the greatest rock songs of our time, exploring all of the rock and roll standards, including hits from AC/DC (or perhaps, as I'm in Australia I should say AccaDacca?), Queen, Kiss, Guns 'n' Roses and so many more. The show is largely dance focussed, with some singing, and acting scattered throughout, and this works in the show's favour, allowing the tunes to be enjoyed by the audience. Alas I have been unable to find a cast-list, so I shall be referring to the performers by the character names (if any) or by their particular role within a song.
Tribute to Rock has a simple, easy to follow plot that serves mainly as a conduit through which the song and dance numbers are performed. It's simply the tale of a student, Rory, who has transferred to "Star Academy" on a ballet and singing scholarship, but has a passion for rock. This love is quickly taken up by her new class members, much to the chagrin of their singing and dance teachers. The show then builds, with an exploration of different rock standards, with some hip hop thrown in for good measure. this all culminates in a "showcase" performance, effortlessly bringing together all the aspects explored in the show.
The cast, consisting almost entirely of young performers (ages 8-18), are magnificent dancers and have terrific voices - with the stand out vocalists being those who sang Sweet Child of Mine. But this is not a singing show, nor are they a covers band. This is a dance show first and foremost and let me tell you, these performers can dance. Boy can they dance. Among the cast of 28 there is not a single weak dancer among them, regardless of the style of dance, from contemporary to ballet. Kudos must be given to those confidently flipping their way across the stage, and to the older blonde ballet dancer, whose movement on-stage was unmatched, this is not to demerit the rest of the cast, whose coordination is near-perfect.
The show does have it's weak moments, and unfortunately they come in the form of the acting, from both young and old alike, and while the script itself is fairly basic more time could have been spent to polish some of the delivery of the lines - I appreciate that the plot and the acting is secondary to what is primarily a dance piece but I feel that when a show has acting in it, it ought to be as polished as the dance.
This show is listed on the Adelaide Fringe website as a Children's show, but as with many performances aimed at younger audiences there are aspects that can be enjoyed by anyone, so don't let the listing put you off!
Tribute to Rock is on in the Fame room at Star Academy on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd of March. Tickets and more information can be found on the Adelaide Fringe Website.