Laughter. Dancing. Demogorgons. Three things that are unlikely to go together. Thanks to the writer Jonathan Hogue and the Stranger Sings cast, this odd combination became a fortunate reality. The parody musical takes its audience through the first season of the Netflix series Stranger Things. It is an ode to musical theatre fans, Stranger Things enthusiasts and 80s lovers. However, to really enjoy it, Stranger Sings aims at an audience that ticks all three boxes.

Nostalgia seeps throughout the show, from the moment audience members are welcomed to their seats. They will catch a view of the impressive stage designed by Justin Williams, which was beautifully lit with fairy lights and glitzy spotlights, thanks to Clancy Flynn. This would especially tickle the fancy of Stranger Things fans, who would recognise iconic scenes embedded into the stage. At the bar, audience members are able to enjoy a range of Stranger Things-themed cocktails and slushies, while listening to well-known 80s tracks.

The tight-knit cast displayed excellent moments in musicality and professionalism, accompanied by the live musical director, Debbi Clarke. Finton Flynn, who played Lucas, Erica and the Demogorgon demonstrated expert quick-changes, skilfully directed by Ellis Kerkhoven. Holly Sumpton showed her humour as a puppeteer playing the missing son Will, and showing a great impression and singing talents as Joyce, Will’s mother. The actress really comes into her own in the song “Crazy”, bringing the house down in laughter. Georgina Mcelwee bursts onto the stage with sass and attitude, working towards her 11 o’clock number “Barb’s Turn”. 

Songs from Stranger Sings had a stream of musical theatre and movie inspirations, such as Funny Girl, Dear Evan Hanson, Heathers the Musical and the Muppets Movie, replacing the lyrics with essentially a critique of the Netflix Series. This is especially a treat for musical theatre fans, who would leave the venue singing the songs over and over, giving a new variety of earworms to enjoy. It certainly turns frowns upside down.  

It runs until 15th January 2023.


Review: Ramsey Baghdadi             Photo: Giulia Paratelli