With the UK general election over and done with, you’d think that’d be enough voting for one week – but step inside the London Theatre Workshop and you’ll find Vote For Me: A Musical Debate, a wickedly funny satire on US politics from the writers of Avenue Q. Watch the presidential candidates weave through the minefield of difficult questions in “the world’s biggest popularity contest”, aided (?) and abetted by political advisors and ruthlessly ambitious spouses – and then vote for your favourite at the end. For those unacquainted with the US political system, this is a very accessible production. A reference guide in the back of the programme is even provided to assist you.
Hans Rye as inept Republican candidate Buddy Rounsaville frequently turns to his advisor to find out what he thinks, yet comes across as a very amiable, jovial man of the people, backed up by his tigress of a wife, Amy (Jennie Jacobs), whose ruthless streak frequently bubbles over, to great comic effect. By contrast we have the neurotic, try-too-hard Democrat Janet Tilghman (Emily Lynne) who wavers beautifully between the desire to do the best for her country and the pressures of being the first woman president. As the show progresses, the vulnerability in her eyes becomes ever more evident. At her side is her beta-male husband, Roger (Arvid Larsen), resplendent in bland beige, equally unsure of how to fulfill his duty and be “…the First First Lady, who stands up when she pees.”
My ticket was courtesy of Bargain Theatre. To read the review in full, please click here.