Review: Friends! the music parody

When Friends Released in 1994, viewers waited long term. You had to wait seven days between shows to find out what Ross and Rachel’s beach vacation with the gang was like when they were, clearly, on a break. You had to wait months to find out if Monica and Chandler would survive their adventure.

And maybe that’s what helped make the show so successful: the anticipation, the dedication, though it was probably the all-star cast of quirky characters and the funny dialogue they’d been gifted.

Of course, nowadays you can see the whole series of Friends on Netflix or 10 Shake in the time it takes to recover from a nasty cold, but what a thrill to see each episode sped up and strung together in a sub-two-hour theatrical production and feel like you’ve reconnected with old friends. I mean, that’s the feeling the original TV show producers wanted you to have every week, right? It’s where the name came from.

traveling show Friends! the music parody begins in Central Perk, the idyllic café where Ross (played by Tyran Stig) and his sister Monica (Annie Chiswell) hang out every morning, noon, and night with their friends Chandler (Maverick Newman), Joey (Conor Putland), and Phoebe ( Belinda Jenkins). ) – And Rachel (Eleanor Macintyre) walks in with her wedding dress. She has left her fiancé at the altar and isn’t that the most fruitful situation she has ever come across? She Now she has found these friends!

What follows — the dating horrors and heartbreaks, the job fluctuations, the birth of your brother’s triplets — is parodied in this performance at the Dunstan Playhouse, and sitcom fans (that is, pretty much all the audience) are in complete agreement.

Let’s be clear: Friends! the music parody, an off-Broadway and Las Vegas hit, won’t be of any interest to non-fans, because pranks are only funny if you know and love the antics of Rachel, Ross, Monica, Chandler, Phoebe, and Joey. Maybe that’s a flaw with the show, or maybe that’s what makes any parody successful.

Book and lyric writers Bob and Tobly McSmith, who have also worked on theatrical parodies of 90210 Y Full house, seems to be on a mission to keep it simple and recognizable, playing it safe with jokes that viewers loved the first time around. The cast recreates Monica’s explanation of the seven erogenous zones, the time Joey wore all of Chandler’s clothes, Ross’s outrage at someone at work who ate his sandwich…and it’s hilarious.

But if you’re looking to broaden your reading of what the TV show was interested in and what it could be today (considering the fact that it didn’t portray a multicultural New York City and wasn’t empathetic to LGBTIQ people, or those with mental), and you expected some reward – sorry, this is all satire; nothing remotely current or cerebral.

Eleanor Macintyre as Rachel and Tyran Stig as Ross stand out as they are more attuned to their characters’ affectations, including facial expressions, embodiment, and vocalization. Maverick Newman (could get a better name for an actor?), like Chandler, he is also very strong in his physique, but his character doesn’t really have much of a chance to break out; rather, he’s stuck in a cycle of making bad jokes that make the rest of the crew complain.

Probably the deepest acting comes from Dom Hennequin, who plays Gunther and Richard as Tom-Selleck as the caricature of an old man (among others), because he goes beyond the characters on screen and becomes cool and sometimes even conceptual. But, like we said, there’s no need to go conceptual – This is a musical parody!

For a break from overthinking and a guaranteed clean, nostalgic, indulgent good time, give yourself to these friends, who are, if you still want them to be, there for you.

Friends! The musical parody is in the Dunstan Playhouse through May 15.

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This article is supported by the Judith Neilson Institute for Journalism and Ideas.

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