#Edfringe: Vulvarine – A New Musical – Review
A silly, witty, fabulous funny musical about an unlikely female superhero, Vulvarine grabs life by the pussy to save the sleepy town of High Wickham.
Bryony Buckle is astoundingly average – give her an egg salad sandwich for lunch and she’s happy. Working for the tax office after their idea for Tinder for book swapping app didn’t take off (Can I just say, I would be their number one customer), a mystery begins to discover where the proceeds of the tampon tax are going.
But when she receives hormone therapy gone wrong, and is struck by lightning while walking home, she transforms into a super hero – part sea urchin, part super woman: Vulvarine is born! Suddenly struck with super strength, perfect vision, the ability to blend into surroundings and also speak to cats, she vows to get to the bottom of this, and take on The Mansplainer.
With catchy tunes like ‘Nothing Ever Happens in High Wickham’, more double-entendres, dad jokes and super hero references than you can poke a stick at and an annoyingly relatable story about the putting down of women, Vulvarine is so much fun to watch and a seriously enjoyable experience.
Five strong performers and vocalists make up the cast, of Robyn Grant, Allie Munro, Katie Wells, Jamie Mawson and Steffan Rizzi. Their versatility is astounding – they change roles at the drop of a hat, Munro also choreographed the show with Jed Berry and Grant wrote the book, and the lyrics with Daniel Foxx. From toe tapping tunes to fantastic movement around the space, the show is filled with joy, good vibes and silly, side slapping laughter.
The set is simple as flat boards with the map of the town, but with fold out elements to signal scene changes from the home to office, and the amount of costume changes pulled off is impressive. The costumes are also simple but extremely effective, from the superhero costumes to the cross dressing and the quick transformations between characters.
I’m glad I saw Vulvarine first, because Fat Rascal also have another show at the Fringe, Unfortunate: The Untold Story of Ursula, and they raise the bar yet again with the show (read my review here), and I know that fellow reviewer Gina from the Culture Bean was less impressed with Vulvarine because she saw Unfortunate first (read all her reviews here). Either way, Fat Rascal are bringing some seriously impressive female focused new musical theatre, and we’re here for it!
For all those women who grew up needing a superhero, make like Bryony Buckle and become one yourself. If you can’t, the least you can do is see Vulvarine and support Fat Rascal and their brilliant shows.
Vulvarine plays at Gilden Balloon’s Patter Hoose until 26 August. More info.
Keep an eye on what Fat Rascal are up to - https://fatrascaltheatre.com