Vulvarine is the name of a new superhero - one caught by lightning after a jab and who’s cells evolve too quickly. The process of discovery of her super strength and more is well portrayed and inventively achieved with some great supporting actors around this central character. She’s there to uncover the embezzlement of the tampon tax and ‘save womankind’.
It’s not the first time this company of have put something new together - and their experience is evident. Some well rehearsed choreography of movement, some great vocal pieces and embracing some moments which are somewhat over the top in a way that delivers the story, adds to the fun and keeps the audience tickling with laughter throughout. Whilst every member of the Fat Rascal team do a great job, my highlight in this show is Robyn Grant definitely, although Allie Munro playing Briony Buckle holds everything together really well.
There are some deeper moments, but you certainly need to go in to this expecting some formulaic fun. Another plus point to the show is the costumes. This is done really well and the range of characters are effectively portrayed - sometimes doubling up with some good costume changes and stereotypical attire that help to convey the message.
With impeccable timing throughout keeping this show smooth and rattling through a feature film’s worth of storyline, gender equality issues are addressed by this female led team. They’re tackled through an element of absurdity and making fun of the stereotypes in such a way that you can think about them and realise, woah, how do we allow these things in society?
Adding further to this production is good lighting and inventive staging; using the set in multiple ways to portray the various settings, and using actors playing ‘invisibly’ to make objects move and fly. It's not done in a way that tries to hide the magic, but so calmly that you almost ignore the actor there. Supporting the vocal talents is of course some good audio and sounds; although this does take a seat behind the raw vocal talents. As such that’s plus points for every element of design in this production. That’s where the experience and training comes out.
However I mention above this is a little formulaic. There’s good twists, but the story is like an amalgamation of many other superhero stories and classic good v evil stories with the dimwitted being exploited, a love story blossoming and unexpected heroes. Perhaps it’s hard to be totally original today, and the staging does overcome this to add a solid dose of quality whilst the casting is mostly excellent. So you can enjoy this show for what it is, it’s a great effort by some relatively recent graduates.
In a prime 7pm slot - this is a good way to start an evening of entertainment or end a day full of shows. Regardless of where it falls on our schedule you won’t be disappointed either way.
Assembly George Square Studios @ 19:00
More details & tickets: https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/vulvarine-a-new-musical
Read our interview with Robyn Grants: https://www.voicemag.uk/interview/4163/interview-with-robyn-grant-fat-rascal-theatre