SLICK SKETCHES AND AN EXPLOSIVE ENDING
When you make something out of nothing and then stage it in front of a live audience with no guarantee it will come out the same way twice, you’ve instantly secured hero status with musical comedy lovers. One Night Only: The Greatest Musical Never Written isn’t just a show for the ages, it’s a highly amusing offering that makes you forget all about the troubles of the day for more than 100 minutes of giggly goo.
The ensemble make it painfully clear no one knows what the show will be about in the opening number ‘Just One Night.’ When it comes time for the ‘Alberta’ song, you can help but lament you won’t be waking up west of the Prairies in the morning.
‘Up Our Game,’ ‘Fort McMurray to Calgary’ and ‘Be Our Midnight Cowboys’ are just a few of the other musical nuggets that suggest there’s a life worth living outside Hogtown if we’re ever brave enough to make the pilgrimage.
This insane improv posse doesn’t just come out to exercise their spontaneity for Bathurst Street playgoers. Instead the 6 performers play it fast and lose throughout the slick sketches and watching them try and get out of a scene is when the troupe really strike it rich.
That says something about the ingenuity of organic comedy. It’s mined, not drilled and although each performance has an original plot, sustained characters, music and song, its anyone’s guess what will happen next when the cast can’t even be sure themselves.
Chuck wagon’s and cow tieing have by no means gone the way of the Wooley Mammoth. The Calgary Stampede setting in this magnificent oh-no-they-didn’t gives them plenty of laughable territory to roam right up until Burton Cumming’s ‘These Eyes’ sets of an explosively good ending.
Review by Steven Berketo
ONE NIGHT ONLY: THE GREATEST MUSICAL NEVER WRITTEN by Alan Kliffer January 27 – February 14, 2016 FACTORY THEATRE, 125 Bathurst Street, Toronto TICKETS $30.00 – $55.00 www.factorytheatre.ca/what-s-on/one-night-only CAST Ashley Botting, Jan Caruana, Carly Heffernan, Reid Janisse, Ron Pederson, Alex Tindal ORCHESTRA Ewan Divitt, Jake Koffman, Dave Stein, Justin Han PIT SINGERS Miriam Drysdale, Kevin Vidal DIRECTOR Melody Johnson SET DESIGN Brandon Kleiman LIGHTING Josh Hoodless SOUND DESIGN Jason Cabanaw