As someone who is also looking to emigrate to London in the coming years, LaLa Barlow and Robbie Smith’s cabaret on share house horrors is an amusing and witty night of stuff you just can’t make up. A laugh out loud mash up of songs from Shaggy, Eminem, and Adele to Chicago, Little Shop of Horrors and Legally Blonde, woven in with original numbers and ridiculous anecdotes.
In 2016, Barlow and Smith moved to London, and lived in a warehouse, with ten other people. So they wrote a show about all the things that happened there and the interesting characters they met along the way. Direction by Sarah Redmond is sharp and effective, keeping the show light and exciting, and Smith and Barlow are a dream team together. The two’s chemistry shows how they survived their time abroad together, as well as put together this adorable show. You can clearly see their trust as performances and how in sync they are with each other, both playing the keyboard, singing and portraying six other characters each, while racing around the stage, navigating props and costume items with ease. Simple props are used incredibly well to help the two transform into the wild range of characters, from British bake off contestant wannabe to gym junkie to a ‘yoga gigolo’ and more.
The show is kooky, fun and light hearted, with stand out numbers like Chicago’s ‘We Both Reached For The Gun’ rewritten to be about a particularly explosive and anonymous bathroom incident, and peppering the show with references to British comedy, many accents and the advice to skip the Jack the Ripper tour when you get to the UK. The pair alternates playing the keyboard, leapfrogging over each other with ease and often playing together, while also being completely in sync with the cute and boppy choreography that complimented their songs and tunes.
It’s sometimes a little hard to hear their lovely voices over the keyboard and sound effects at times, which has often been an issue with not using microphones at the MC Showroom. The venue is warm on these brisk winter nights (not unlike the UK really) and perfectly set up for a show like this. Barlow and Smith are great sports throughout the show and despite a technical hiccup, where the prerecorded backing track for their most impressive song dropped out, they reset and soldiered through the song and performance unaccompanied and didn’t let it phase them. Most of all, they seemed to have true fun performing it, which made it a joy for the audience to watch.
You’ve only got a few chances to see this witty little ditty at the MC Showroom before it heads off to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, so let’s hope it makes a return season at Melbourne Fringe Festival later this year! The Worst Little Warehouse in London plays until 24th June in Prahran.
Details and tickets at: https://www.worstlittlewarehouse.com/