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Previewed 4 September 2008, Opened 9 September 2008, Closed 1 November 2008 at the Novello Theatre in London
Eurobeat - Almost Eurovision is a riotously funny and dazzling musical comedy homage to the biggest annual song contest in Europe, presented live on stage with you, the audience, having the power to decide which of the ten competing countries will win via mobile phone text voting!
MOVE OVER EUROVISION - EUROBEAT THE MUSICAL IS THE NEW SHOW IN TOWN! Set in Sarajevo, who have somehow won the rights to host this year's competition. Each audience member will be assigned to one of the ten competing countries as they enter the venue. Don't forget - you can't vote for your own country although there is nothing to stop you bribing others. The songs each country sings are orginal songs written specially for Eurobeat the Musical.
ITALY - 'Don't Say 'Ti Amo'' sung by Vesuvia Versace
POLAND - 'Together Again' sung by Toomas Jerker and The Hard Pole Dancers
ICELAND - 'Love Ballad #3a' sung by Gert Grollmersdetter
UNITED KINGDOM - 'I Love To Love To Love (Love)' sung by Rayne and Sheiner
RUSSIA - 'Ice Queen' sung by The KG Boyz
HUNGARY - 'Apró Madarakkal' sung by The Molnar Sisters
IRELAND - 'La La La' sung by Ronan Corr
GREECE - 'Oh Aphrodite' sung by Persephone
GERMANY - 'Be-Bop For Veronda' sung by Nepotism
SWEDEN - 'Same Old Song' sung by AVLA
Fall in love to the sounds of Reyne and Sheiner, who continue the fine United Kingdom musical tradition with the kind of quality audiences have come to expect year after year after year. Explode with excitement when you witness Italy's representative, Vesuvia Versace as she blends classic musical art forms in a way that will have the audience going off like a volcano popping its cord. Feel the unity created by the emotions radiating from Ronan Corr, who does his native Ireland pround with an anthem evoking love and world peas (and potatoes). Join the celebration with the group AVLA who represent Sweden with bright music, brighter smiles and teh conviction that you can never have too many sequins. Dare to be different with the entry for Poland, as the pride of the nation is handled glamorously by former political prisoner and Liza Minnelli activits Toomas Jerker and the Hard Pole Dancers. Whoop with delight at the lyrca clas K G Boys. This cutting edge boy band from Russia will amaze you with their tight harmonies and even tighter buttocks. Prepare to be dazzled by former librarian Persephone as she taps into her country's mythology and unleashes something that will astound you as she represents her native Greece. Be enchanted by the charming musical achievement of the Molnar Sisters. The lovely lively lasses represent Hungary in our modern competition but never forget their traditional roots. Gert Grolmesdetter representing Iceland. This great artist clearly has something inside her that is crying out to be expressed artistically (or be removed). Embrace the innovation as you witness Nepotism, pround representatives of Germany, as they redefine what actually constitues an entry in a soung competition.
The cast for Eurobeat in London features, as the hosts, Les Dennis as 'Sergei' and Mel Giedroyc as 'Boyka', with Sarah Boulton, Emma Brooke, Sarah Cahalarn, Emma Cannon, Adam Charles-Hills, Mairi Cowieson, Scott Garnham, Lewis Griffiths, Natasha Jayetileke, Arvid Larsen, Kay Murphy, Craig Perry, Sergio Priftis, and Carl Stallwood. Directed by Glynn Nicholas with choreography by Andrew Hallsworth and Natalie Marsland, designs by Richard Jeziorny, projections by Mark Lewis, lighting by Trudy Dalgleish, and sound by Mike Walker. Musical by Craig Christie and Andrew Patterson, based on an idea by Craig Christie.
"The Eurovision Song Contest is already high camp on a spectacular scale, a licence to snigger at Johnny Foreigner and hurl things at the television in the company of the divine Terry Wogan. The musical, Eurobeat, is even worse; cheaper, nastier. By which I mean it's even better. It's both a hilarious homage and a silly sendup that treasures and trashes the naffness of Eurovision, and it takes camp to heights undreamt of... No wonder tension mounted when the votes texted in by the audience were finally counted." The Mail on Sunday
"How do you mock Eurovision? The original is already comedy gold. Still, the joke might be wearing thin: even twinkling Terry Wogan grumbled his way through this year's partisan voting. So perhaps the time is ripe for Eurobeat. In Craig Christie and Andrew Patterson's creation, we get all the best bits of the contest - the camp, the kitsch and the gallery of national stereotypes - in a much shorter sitting. And it really replicates the structure, encouraging the audience to vote by text message for a winner from 10 absurd finalists." The Sunday Times
"Salvation is at hand with a stage show that manages to unite wit with the cheesy self-parody of Eurovision, proving you can be inventive and crowd-pleasing in one spangled leg-kick... With pastiche songs by Craig Christie and Andrew Patterson, the evening is run like a real contest... It could be a disaster-in-Spandex but Christie's knowing script and Glynn Nicholas's exuberant direction send up and embrace the real event in equal measure, without ever laughing at foreigners for being foreign. Mel Giedroyc and Les Dennis are perfectly pitched as the Bosnian presenting duo - she the regal diva with a laugh somewhere between a horse and a chipmunk, he the dork in a bad wig who cramps her style... With a hugely energetic company throwing themselves into numbers that - however ridiculous - are often better than the genuine efforts they are satirising, it's a joyous festival of musical mickey-taking... This clever, tongue-in-cheek homage puts the actual Eurovision to shame." The Daily Express
"Can you parody something that's already self-parodic? Writers Craig Christie and Andrew Patterson certainly have a go with their spoof Eurovision musical, which is presented from 'sunny, safe, secure Sarajevo' by hosts Boyka (Mel Giedroyc) and Sergei (Les Dennis in a Terry Wogan wig). Sir Tel himself sets the tone with an ironic cameo, after which it's maximum glitz, noise and vulgarity all the way. The hosts' patter is pretty good... The music, on the other hand, is a real disappointment. It's fine for the numbers to be trashy and cliché-ridden but they should ideally be memorable... Audience participation is at the heart of the evening. Spectators are allotted a country to cheer for on anival and text their votes to decide the winner: this is one occasion when you are positively urged to keep your mobile phone on in a theatre." The Metro
Eurobeat - Almost Eurovision originated in Australia in 2003 and comes into London's West End following a successful major UK tour. Craig Christie, the co-writer, said: "It's like anything else. You have an idea for a show, you write it, and then it takes on a life of its own. The thing about Eurobeat is that it always had an extraordinary energy and life about it... We've taken some of the elements of Eurovision and turned up the volume."
Eurobeat - Almost Eurovision in London at the Novello Theatre previewed from 4 September 2008, opened on 9 September 2008 and closed on 1 November 2008.