Search
Close this search box.

Beach Romp-Bomp-A-Lomp | Review, Southwark Playhouse

Described as “Squid Game meets Grease”, the new musical, Fun at the Beach Romp-Bomp-A-Lomp, is a riot of laughs, at the Southwark Playhouse.

Last week I had the pleasure of attending a very silly show indeed, a musical called Fun at the Beach Romp-Bomp-A-Lomp at the Southwark Playhouse.

Described as “Squid Game meets Grease”, my companion and I had no idea what to expect as we entered the theatre to find our seats. The set was bright and colourful, with a beach that extended out almost to the audience (the stage is on the same level as the front row) with a brightly lit sign for the Beach Romp-Bomp-A-Lomp across the top. It looked almost cartoon like, which perfectly set the tone for what was to come.

Enter our cast of characters: 2 groups of 3, 3 girls, 3 boys, all familiar American 60s stereotypes and each clearly matched to someone in the other group. For example, on the guy’s side you’ve got Dude, the good looking guy that everyone thinks is awesome but is wracked with self doubt; his opposite number, Chastity, is pretty, stares off into the distance a lot, and has a lot of trouble with… what’s that word? Oh yeah, thinking! As if those names didn’t tell you enough about them, the script gives the actors plenty of opportunity to really have fun over-acting their characters, with dude constantly brooding and talking about how unworthy he is and Chastity starting almost every line with “um..Gosh…” which is hilarious every time. Janice Landry and Jack Whittle really nailed these roles, and I was chuckling at every “um…gosh..” and “I’m just a bum” throughout the show. The other characters were two “unsure of themselves misfits that never expected to find love until they find each other” types (Ellie Clayton and Tom Babbage), and two over confident loudmouths that also happen to hit it off (Katie Oxman and Damien James). They are all there for the Beach Romp-Bomp-A-Lomp (BRBAL from now on) and want to be crowned “King or Queen of the Beach”. It’s a very straightforward premise that is simply designed to set up a lot of silliness and laughs, which it certainly achieves.

Each task in the BRBAL is more challenging and deadly than the last. Yes, I said deadly, expect lots of death. Yes, it’s a comedy… with lots of death. Oh and music, how could I not mention the music? It’s jam packed with songs that you’ll almost recognise. You’ll nearly hear “Lollipop by the Chordettes”, you’ll not quite hear “In His Kiss by Cher”, and you’ll hear something not entirely unlike “Surfin’ USA by the Beach Boys”, as well as a whole lot more songs that will have you going…”what… Oh I see!” and laughing and laughing at Brandon Lambert’s clever parodic twists on classic songs.

The show pokes fun at many of the classic teen movie/musical stereotypes and has a lot of fun doing it. The leads are all great fun and most of the jokes work brilliantly; ok so there is one ‘bit’ that occurs a few times in the show, where characters just keep repeating the same thing over and over, which is quite funny the first couple of times. I get that it’s meant to be a bit much and meant to have the audience reacting and groaning, but when the character of Joe is repeating the same word for what seems like 5 minutes, there was a point where I was thinking “ok, this has gone on too long now”.

However, this was my only real complaint, so I wouldn’t let it put you off from a really fun and silly show.

There BRBAL is fun, with silly tasks, man eating sharks, a mermaid, a fish baby, electrocution, and lots of other fun and deadly things that you’d unexpect to find in such a silly and surprising show.

It was a thoroughly enjoyable evening of Theatre with a superb cast and band, and I would happily go back and watch it again. If you fancy an evening of fun, silliness, and an awful lot of laughs, be sure to catch the Fun at the Beach Romp-Bomp-A-Lomp before the end of its far too short run on the 22nd June.

To book tickets visit www.southwarkplayhouse.co.uk

Words Nick Barr

Related Posts