Sunday, June 17, 2018


Fan Girls

Book, Music and Lyrics by Yve Blake.  Director Paige Rattray. Dramarturg Jonathan Ware. Vocal Arranger Alice Chance. Music Producer. Dave Muratore. Dunstan Playhouse. Adelaide Cabaret Festival June 16 2018

Reviewed by Peter Wilkins

Yve Blake's original musical FAN GIRLS wows audiences in a script reading and
presentation  at the Adelaide Cabaret Festival.
In recent years, the Adelaide Cabaret Festival has presented a live script reading  of a new musical in development. Eddie Perfect’s Shane Warne the Musical was  presented at a  previous festival before going on to full mainstage production. This year the festival has presented one showing of Yve Blake’s exploding, energy fired account of teenage infatuation, perceived angst and idealistic dreams. Blake’s central character, Edna is a fourteen year old schoolgirl, infatuated with True Connection lead singer, Harry. She lives with her mother and writes fan fiction.  Her schoolfriends, Brianna and Jules and Salty meet to share their fan fiction ideas, and are eventually drawn into a fan fiction fantasy world in which reality and fantasy become the blurred imaginings of the hormone bedevilled teenager.
Blake’s mastery of book, music and lyric is nothing short of inspirational. This is the most moving, exciting and refreshingly modern musical about the lives, loves and rites of passage of a young teenage girl. I am swept away by the musical’s exuberance, intrigued by the story’s twists and turns and sleight of hand with its intellectual trickery and emotional impact. It is a musical for our time, the voice of a young generation, crying out to be heard. From pop o hip hop and hard rock, the music pounds out the rhythms of loving and loathing, performed with confident power by he principals, supported by the Aural Vocal Ensemble.  Fan Girls is a musical of the heart that challenges the mind and with explosive lyrics tears down the walls of preconception, compelling an audience to confront stereotype and prejudice. It is a visceral interpretation of real dreams breaking free and casting aside conditioned views of a patriarchal society.
In a condensed version of the musical commissioned by the Australian Theatre for Young People, Blake weaves in the fears and jealousies of young girls, their hopes and dreams and their obsessed fantasies. We are shown reality but beyond that is the hope of empowerment, the search for identity and the strength to overcome the struggles imposed upon one and of one’s own imaginings. Fan Girls is more than the cry of a tribe. It is a lesson for all, bursting with energy and phenomenal young talent. Watch out for this new work .It has made a fan out of me and will blow you away.