Circus A Go-Go
Book, Music and Lyrics by
1973. Three all American teens quit their geeky cousin's Bar Mitzvah and set out to hitch a ride back to town. Picked up by a dwarf in a dilapidated charabanc, they end up in a remote big top run by Felicia A Go Go, where a maniac killer is on the rampage. One by one, the star turns are being knocked off in spectacular fashion. So ensues a roller-coaster ride of laughs and thrills, from lust in the sawdust to terror in the ring.
For this workshop presentation, West End musical director Kelvin Thomson (who had worked with Ben on developing a musical of Mata Hari earlier in the year) transformed a set of catchy vocal lines into a coherent rock-pop theatre score, imbued with all the 1970s influences which writer Sam Moreno had intended. Owing much to Richard O'Brien and Alan Menken, the score is stuffed with catchy pop hooks and witty, sophisticated lyrics, and accompanied by a terrific witty, fast-moving script.
The final presentation, condensing a 2 hour show with 12 songs to a 45 minute showcase with 6, zipped along with a cast of 8 West End performers playing all the roles and variously narrating parts of the story. As well as stealing lots of ideas from other similar workshops he's done before, Ben also nicked ideas from everywhere from Scooby Doo to Bob Fosse to give this uber-retro rock musical the feel the writer had intended.
Everyone involved hopes the Circus is back on the road very soon....