'Pinch me, is this real?’ Song writer James Bourne, along with writer/composer Elliot Davis, have turned Son of Dork’s debut album, Welcome to Loserville, into a fun, geeky, and electric new musical. Set in the 70s, Loserville celebrates the high school underdog, the teenagers who have all the weird and wonderful ideas but are mocked and shunned by the other kids. Michael Dork, (Aaron Sidwell) along with his best friends and potential first ever girlfriend, Holly (Eliza Hope Bennett), set out to change their status with a revolutionary idea- electronic communication.
It would be unfair to merely disregard this musical as a new manifestation of the T.V. show Glee. Yes it shares similar themes, but where Glee tends to, on occasion, shoe-horn relevant tunes into the story, Son of Dork’s music is seamlessly woven with a clever and refreshing script, showcasing the anecdotal quality of the tunes and encouraging the fluidity of the production overall. The show isn’t perfect, but it does not deserve to have its run in the West End cut short.
The choreography was executed with euphoria-inducing energy and the props were simple but playfully utilised by a well-rounded cast. Strong but seemingly effortless performances were given by all, and their vibrancy was reflected in the colourful lighting design we were treated to throughout the show.
What was encouraging to see was the sea of fresh new faces amongst the actors. As well as all of its other delights, Loserville afforded new names the opportunity to have their time in the spotlight. If the future of theatre lies in the hands of this talented group, then colour me satisfied.