Avenue Q at New Wimbledon
The musical Avenue Q debuted at New Wimbledon Theatre last night after sell-out success in tours across the world since March 2003. People and puppets take to the stage to share this creative, innovative, controversial and iconic wonder by Jeff Marx and Robert Lopez.
In the midst of Avenue Q, a lowly working class area, a small cluster of neighbours experience life as we all know it: outstanding bills to pay, lack of jobs, sexuality, relationships, Jesus, useless degrees and the like. The things we might find depressing and emotionally demanding are somehow turned in to a joke for all to laugh at here. And we laugh because it’s based on truth.
This performance encourages erupting laughter: every scene, from beginning to end, has its perks. The show is relatable to everyone in the audience in one way or another, addressing unspoken issues in an inoffensive manner – surprisingly so, since the title of some of the songs are: If You Were Gay, Everyone’s a Little Bit Racist, and The Internet Is for Porn. Controversial does not even begin to cut it, but from the sound of the cheering and laughing no one is offended. However, the minimum age requirement of 14 seems a little low, particularly because of the rather explicit sex scenes. Youngsters in the audience are warned at the doors, upon arrival, that the show is really rude, but that’s obviously more a caution for parents. Be warned.
With the creator of the collection of puppets, Paul Jomain, and the fabulous cast Stephen Arden, Richard Morse, Jessica Parker, Tom Steedon, Lucie-Mae Summer, Jaqueline Tate and Ellena Vincent behind the wheel, the show is as great a success as it always has been: utterly in tune with the present.
Photo: Tristram Kenton
Avenue Q is at the New Wimbledon Theature until 30th August 2014, for further information or to book visit here.