A whirlpool of hilarious Halloween entertainment

2011-11-09 00:00

REVIEW: It’s All Fright By Me

Catalina Theatre, Durban

IT’S All Fright By Me is a definite fun night out with a young and talented cast who keep the play rolling and the audience hooked until the final bow.

The premise is a simple one: five friends are travelling to a party on Halloween when the typically South African taxi that they are travelling in breaks down near a graveyard. Jessica (Shona Johnson), Bongani (Nhlakanipho Manqele), Charles (Bandile Mkhize), Wendy (Fortunate Dhlomo), Pinky (Xoli Zondi) and the taxi driver, Zakes (Thobani Mbhele) are faced with the night’s demons; real, imaginary and internal, while they scare each other with urban legends about Pinky Pinky, Umsindo and Jap. The track list includes some of everybody’s favourites such as Thriller, Ain’t No Sunshine, Ndihambe Nawe , Show Dem and Just An Illusion .

The first half is a whirlpool of entertainment that swallows the audience with foot-tapping songs, flawless acting and side-splitting humour. However, the second half is let down by what seems like a rushed script that tries too hard to tie everything together in a morally touching end. This somewhat detracts the play from its earlier momentum, but the show manages to remain rivetting and delightful.

The spotlight is divided equally among the six performers and each gleam in their roles. Dhlomo’s performance as a somewhat epileptic ghoul and Manwele’s portrayal of a stuttering friendly one were astounding.

Mkhize delivers a brilliant rendition of Lady Gaga’s Bad Romance that had the audience laughing even after the show had ended. While the performances of Colours of the Wind from the film Pocahontas and Seasons of Love from the film Rent were a sobering treat within the show’s series of heightened cha os.

All in all, this musical revue is a must-see for anyone looking for a refreshing night out. Keep an eye on these young performers as they have a spark that might just set South African live theatre on fire.

• It’s All Fright By Me is at the Catalina Theatre at Wilson’s Wharf in Durban until November 13. Tickets are R85 (R65 concessions). To book, phone 031 305 689.

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