I was invited to see Guy at The Old Rep theatre in Birmingham last night. The production is partway through it’s uk tour and was on in Birmingham for one night only.
This new musical directed by Aran Cherkez is packed with 17 original songs and tells a simple story of online dating and self discovery. With story and lyrics by Leo Mercer and music and production by Stephen Hyde
With only four cast members and a beautifully pared back set we follow the adventures and sometimes misadventures of Guy (Ben Raymonds) and his friends Tyler (Elliot Wooster) Joe (Steve Banks) and Aziz (Aarian Mehrabani).
Guy tells a modern story as our titular character Guy dips a toe into the murky waters of Grindr and online dating. He discovers he is looking for a long term, romantic relationship and not a one night stand. After being rejected one too many times, Guy feels it’s his looks holding him back and he experiments with using his friend Tyler’s picture and does a little catfishing. Of course his catfishing all goes wrong and it ultimately threatens his friendship with Tyler. The play finished with the incredibly catchy song, We Are The Beautiful People, as Guy finally understands that beauty really is within.
I loved the central character of Guy and I thought Ben Raymonds played his part so well, it was easy to forget I was watching a play. Ben really gave his character a personality that shone. Something that not every actor does successfully.
I found the character of Tyler to be equally engaging and charming. Elliot Wooster has an amazing singing voice. With that voice and his fine features, Eliot has the world of musical theatre at his feet.
Steve Banks portrays Joe, not always as nice a person as he could be. Joe is proof that beauty is only skin deep, It was one of the stand out out scenes for me when Steve Banks flips from one character to another as Guy is replying to various texts and Steve voices all the messages. A very clever scene with a real talent bringing it to life.
And last but not least was Aziz, played superbly by Aarian Mehrabani. A kind hearted friend to everyone, not only was his character believable and warm, his singing was energetic and he complimented the other characters perfectly. There are no egos on stage, just pure entertainment. This is exactly what I want from musical theatre.
The music is catchy, upbeat, modern and sounds like an instant classic. “We click like a light switch. We shuffle like a playlist. We kiss like a plot twist. We cuddle like a double helix” from Click (reprise) and “I search, I find… what am I looking for? I really don’t mind Get on the dance floor.” From What Am I Looking For.
With upcoming dates at Ormskirk, Manchester, Huddersfield, Keswick, Mansfield Wimbledon and London you can find out all the details you need at Herehttp://www.leoandhyde.com/Guy or follow on social media @guythemusical.
This is not a sponsored post. I was invited as a guest to see Guy and all thoughts expressed here are my own.