The where a whole town blame a bat boy for their problems raising cows?
Firstly I have to apologise, I saw this sometime ago and somehow slipped through the net.
Although a drama school production, I have said for sometime now that Chris Hocking and the team over at Arts Ed have some of the safest hands in the industry and I have yet to be disappointed by the level of professionalism from the costume and set, to the glorious performances given by the students.
Batboy thankfully is no exception.
This being a production dear to my heart (one did play the title role at Bretton Hall many moons ago) I was apprehensive about anyone else playing the role. Truth is Matthew Rowland with closely shaved hair, a far cry from the locks in his headshot, is wonderful.
The story which farcically drops in on a town in the deep south, sees Mrs Taylors doped up kids, discover a boy half boy, half bat, BAT BOY. Taking him to the local vet Dr Parker, a whole mess of what results in a vetinarian experience gone wrong, results in one bloody end. Topped with a few angry townsfolk who blame BatBoy for killing their depleating cow herd. Oh and Incest, theres a whole theme of incest... and BBC language tapes.
Truth is, this musical with book by Keythe Darley and Brian Flemming, with Music and Lyrics by Laurence O'Keefe is incredibly random, but with a fantastic rock score.
The band led by David Beer tackled the challenging score with ease, and worked perfectly with the south american drawl from this talented cast.
Jenny O'Leary as Mrs Taylor had all the wit and comic timing the role requires as each of her children end up dead on stage... one with a rather grotesque burning.
Alison Pope as Meredith is paired wonderfully with the psychotic Dr Parker, played by Matthew Dale.
As ever Arts Ed present some of the best, if not thee best dance training in London, and a show that wouldnt normally feature large ensemble dances is treated to rousing numbers with the whole cast presenting difficult routines by Alistair David.
My only criticism is that the piece which is notoriously farcical, was played with so much truth that the audience kept quiet for a long time, many not realising the jokes littered throughout the text.
All in all a great production, and a reminder that someone should bring this show back.