21 theatre has another hit on its hands, if the audience is anything to go by. Given the reception of the audience for The Other Guys it seems as if it is maintaining its role as the leading producer of music and musical theatre at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
21 theatre is producing five shows at this year’s festival, housing all in the behemoth that is C Venues (despite the unfortunate removal of our beloved C Nova this year). They present a great band with an enthusiastic feel, wonderful late night sound and have also cast a broad selection of young and up and coming talent – a good mix.
Opening The Other Guys with ‘What a Night’ started off with a lively and enthusiatic reception, ensuring the audience remained enthralled throughout. Hits quickly start to roll along – Sherry Baby with its high-pitched harmonies, Walk Like A Man, Can’t Take My Eyes Off You and (obviously) What A Night. Delivered with style, synchronized moves, tight harmonies and with more than a nod and a wink to the period, this tribute band did not disappoint musically. It is only when they broke out of characters and situation, presenting themselves to the audience, where the piece started falling flat. Introducing themselves as enthusiastic drama students who were fans of the era and genre meant any edge of sophistication was lost. As individuals they don’t quite have the persona, chat or repartee to carry that delivery for any length of time but (fortunately) after ripping through a rather rushed medley, eventually found themselves back on safer and more famous ground – which all felt much more comfortable.
There is no development or exploration of ‘The Guys’, a shame considering it would have been interesting to hear their story of being in the spotlight. However, in terms of being a tribute band and therfore recalling a style and sound of a particular time, it is done successfully. The late night audience certainly loved it and the evening ended with everyone on their feet dancing and singing along. Fancy an entertaining evening that leaves you feeling upbeat? Then The Other Guys is for you.