Swipe Right Theatre’s latest musical comedy Scream Phone unites 90s horror film classics with a reworking of 80s hits.
The three teenagers – Melody, Stacey and Janice – make up “Beaver Babes”, an American trio of friends having a sleepover during a storm, reading from their diaries each time the power cuts. Melody (Natasha Granger) likes to think of herself as the leader of the group, constantly boasting about her hair, and how blondes have more fun. She is given a “Dream Phone” by her mother (Kerrie Thomason), a vintage game played to call boy crushes. Stacey (Alexandra Lewis) – whose physical get up resembles that of Anastasia Krupnik – is desperately infatuated with Melody, and is the archetypal geek of the group, while Janice (also Thomason) is portrayed as an airhead. Together, the three resemble such characters we would likely find in slasher films. As the girls begin receiving phone calls by outsider Beaver Babe “Sally”, who lures them with little details of their boy crushes, things take a darker turn.
The interpretation of 80s musical numbers like Cindy Lauper’s Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, Madonna’s Like a Prayer and Eurythmics’ Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This), to name a few, are incorporated with original lyrics, creating a fun and memorable production. Moreover, what makes this contemporary fringe comedy so entertaining is the selection of an unwitting audience member. Tonight a young Iranian man is brought on stage, the cast cleverly assimilating him into the story as a foreign exchange student, and who turns out to be the girls’ mutual romantic interest. Swipe Right Theatre successfully entertain their audience with a combination of tongue-in-cheek humour, exaggerated performances and an unexpected ending, which though closely mirrors 2017 drama horror Ghost Stories doesn’t deflect from Scream Phone being a riot of fun and a genuinely enjoyable show.
Photo: Swipe Right Theatre
Scream Phone is at Network Theatre from 20th until 24th February 2019. For further information or to book visit the show’s festival page here.
Read more reviews from our Vault Festival 2019 coverage here.
For further information about the event visit the Vault Festival website here.