Chase the Musical (Table Read)
Rating: N/A*
Venue: The Other Palace, London
Cast: Dax O'Callaghan, Tanesha Moses, Lloyd Notice, Rachel White, Shak Mancel James, Miranda Wilford, Curtis Patrick and Glenn Adamson

After his creator’s death, a mechanical being sets out to uncover his purpose for existing. Man-made, but conscious with the ability to feel emotion, Chase discovers the realities of the new world, and the people in it, and learns how to save it all from vanishing forever…

*Due to this being a table read, and a very early introduction to the production, I think it's too soon to give the show a rating. Also, due to ill health, I had to leave the production 30 minutes early, which may also affect my overall rating.

Last night, I went to watch a table read of a brand new musical. While it was pitched as a table read, it was much further in production than I would have expected. There was an ensemble, choreography, and even stage directions highlighted in text on the wall behind the stage. This all helped to bring the musical to life.

When I read the synopsis of the musical, it sounded very much like Edward Scissorhands, which is one of my favourite films; so I was excited to see what Chase the Musical had in store. It's pitched as a blend of Edward Scissorhands, Beauty and the Beast and Sex Education. While it seems an odd mix, it's quite the perfect description of themes! 

Chase the Musical follows the story of a mechanic creation called Chase who has been living on his own in an abandoned laboratory, his creator gone. A group of young friends find Chase while searching for new social media content, and bring him into the real world. Chase is intelligent, all-knowing and attracts attention wherever he goes, which the gang are constantly trying to avoid. However, there's an illness wiping out the human race in it's millions, and Chase may just be the key to finding the cure...

Moesha (Tanesha Moses) is our focal character who takes Chase under her wing. Moses plays the character brilliantly, making her both relatable and engaging. And the chemistry between herself and Chase (Dax O'Callaghan) is fantastic. Their relationship is such a central part of the show, I'm unsure it would work as well as it does if the pair hadn't been as dynamic as they were together.

While Jeffrey (Curtis Patrick) is a secondary character, it was hard not to fall in love with him. He brings comedic relief to the musical and shone the brightest for me within the show. Not only is he a great actor and a brilliant singer, his comedic timing is absolute perfection. 

With a completely original script and score, it can be difficult to engage the audience with something so fresh, but Chase the Musical does this with ease. There were a few memorable songs throughout. Each to Their Own was a beautiful duet about embracing your differences and respecting that everyone is unique and special, which is a gorgeous message. Other favourites of mine included Black Sheep, performed by Glenn Adamson (real Bat Out of Hell vibes!) and Childhood Dreams, performed by Tanesha Moses. Polar opposite songs, but the duo of songs opened Act 2 with a bang!

It was very well staged for a table read and one aspect I particularly enjoyed was the choreography. I think in a full staged production, choreography would play a huge part and the glimpse that we got was utterly fantastic. It's worth noting that the production is very modern and a large chunk of the dialogue is sung, which I thought worked well. It seems to take elements from other popular musicals such as Hamilton.

The show felt quite slow paced and feel like some scenes could easily be removed without losing much of the story. However, as it's so early in production, I'm sure this is something that can be easily adjusted. Another aspect I found quite challenging was imagining Chase as a mechanical being. While Dax's acting was great, there's only so far your mind can take you into imagining he's a robot. This is another instance in which I feel that costumes and props would elevate the production to the next level.

This was an exceptional table read and I'm really hoping for a full staged production of Chase the Musical in the future. With a larger stage, props and costumes, I can only imagine how fantastic this musical could be. It's endearing, fun and has heart-warming themes of belonging throughout. 

You can keep up to date with all things Chase the Musical by following the show on Instagram, here.

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