Raspberry ***


A Play, a Pie and a Pint at the Oran Mor, Glasgow
Monday 3rd November – Saturday 8th November 2008

The Oran Mor offered a pie-size musical, Raspberry, for our lunch time viewing this week. A short and sweet story about a girl named Rita, who over comes her disability and faces up to her father’s old fashion views. Guided by the Scottish ghost of pop legend “Spastius” and a female Ray Charles, she deals with her own issues and lets her father know she does not need to be fixed. Add a chorus of RSAMD student angels making a beautiful sound to fill the Oran Mor’s basement and the result is a quirky piece of theatre that certainly amused the “west-end trendies.”

Unfortunately, this co-production of Sounds of Progress, Fittings MultiMedia Arts and RSAMD has a few flaws that stopped it becoming something truly special. The main benefit of the Oran Mor space is also its biggest problem – the space is so diverse and adjustable that productions can be easily moved in and out but the result is, at times, the set can feel clumsy and unstable. Possibly due to this space issue, the production lacked a natural flow that is usually expected from musicals. Generally, the music worked well for the purpose – a few catchy tunes and gorgeous ballad delivered by Claire Cunningham – but occasionally it felt slightly repetitive. Yet, overall the production felt short and by the time the audience began to invest in the character, it was all over.

However, the concept of writer Gary Robson and the dramatic intentions of director Gordan Dougall should be admired. Hopefully, the Oran Mor’s theatre series will bring us more original musicals next year and continue to offer us interesting lunchtime viewings.



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