Review by Khoi
60 mins | Comedy | PG
This year’s OYPTS Showcase! was performed by eleven girls and three boys from the Orleans Young Players Theatre School. Andrea Cochrane and Alan Dean McDowell wrote and produce the musical Sweet Nothin’ for the OYP’s Showbiz class six years ago. This Fringe Fest marks their last with the theatre school and, as they wrote in their brochure, it was only fitting to bow out by “reviving [our] very first endeavor”.
Sweet Nothin’s plot is the quintessential mix of small town girl with great voice and eyes set on Broadway, over protective mother robbed of fame by a backstabbing rival, and broken friendships. Remember to throw in a dash of “Mean Girls” for good measure.
This musical was clearly not a big budget production; nevertheless, there was good use of the stage, and the simple settings were effective in representing the various locations where the plot unfolds. There were a few mishaps, such as getting caught in wires, not clearing the stage in time during set changes, pacing issues, and yelling out the wrong line—nothing that a few more rehearsals couldn’t smooth out. My number one criticism, however, was the sound: why was it so difficult to turn on the mic when it was needed? Even though we were in a small intimate venue, I couldn’t always hear the lyrics, which was frustrating for me as a spectator so I’m sure it was distracting for the actors as well.
Despite the technical issues, I enjoyed the show and thought the young cast made a wonderful effort. I took one drama class in high school and painfully learned that I should not be on stage. These budding actors definitely have more talent than I ever will so I encourage them to continue taking acting classes and furthering their passion. Go support them by checking out their next performance!
OYPTS Showcase! is playing at Venue 4 – Academic Hall (133 Seraphin-Marion, University of Ottawa) on Saturday, June 18 at 1:30pm and Saturday, June 25 at 1:30pm. Tickets are $10 each.