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Theatre Review: Carrie The Musical @ Southwark Playhouse


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1988. The RSC take Stephen King's infamous horror about a bullied girl's rage in a typical washed-out high school, her mother's extreme religious views and, like any high school, a handful of prom obsessives and jocks, to Broadway.

After five performances, Carrie The Musical was to close and lose $7 million, making it the biggest flop in Broadway history. 

Brought back from the grave in 2012 and revised by original composer and lyricist Michael Gore  and Dean Pitchford, Carrie was drenched in fresh pig blood and lasted 46 performances.
Now at Southwark Playhouse, she's back and making us pray for our salvation. Fresh on our palates after the most recent film rendition of the story with Chloë Grace-Moretz, Londoners seem to be lapping it up, with lip syncers populating the small audience. 
These are career defining roles for the cast, some still undergraduates. Evelyn Hoskins (Misfits) as Carrie seemed a perfect fit, with Kim Criswell playing a sadly milder than hoped mother. Though a small and young cast, the group were near on impeccable in standard. Patrick Sullivan and Bobbie Littles' (Frieda) debuting professional voices coupled with Greg Miller-Burns' (Tommy) execution of script really questions how such a musical flopped years ago. 
Though enjoyable, Carrie The Musical is still far from perfect. Too many solo numbers sounded too similar and clipping was needed. It's a show painstakingly almost "there". 
Carrie The Musical is the hottest and bloodiest ticket in London, a tempestuous story of high school drama. It's Matilda with an exorcism, High School Musical on a Class A and eerily immersive. The intimacy of the venue, somewhat globe-esque, serves as the primary reason that Carrie is successful. Eye contact and proximity made the flirts with the devil that little bit more disturbing. 
Expect volume, impressive telekinetic effects, a few unnecessary numbers and cautious stepping over a blood ridden stage post performance. 
Until 30th May.

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