Fun at the Beach Romp-Bomp-A-Lomp

This is a truly unhinged piece of musical theatre, it lies somewhere between Squid Games, Scary Movie and a 50’s B movie with some songs thrown in for good measure!

We meet a group of six happy go lucky teens who are at the beach for the annual ‘Romp-Bomp-A-Lomp’ competition to try and become the King or Queen of the beach…but there are some murderous twists to the competition which no one expected! A series of challenges, each more deadly than the last sees our cast pushed to their limits…but who will be left standing?

It is fast paced running at 85 minutes and they pack a lot of action into this small time. It’s full of hilarious tropes and goes very meta at points, calling out the jukebox musical genre (or is it juicebox?) and the ridiculousness of breaking out into song at any moment. Mark Bell continues his well known brand of comedy direction with brilliant physical comedy at the centre of the laughs over the evening.

The cast shine in this show, in particular Ellie Clayton as Mary-Jo does a wonderful job of bringing the character to life. Mary-Jo starts as the unassuming shy friend but later comes into her own and finds a new sense of self, this really gives Ellie the opportunity to show off her fantastic characterisation and vocal talents. Katie Oxman is fabulous as Chickie, brilliant physicality and comic timing means she is a standout here, her vocal talent is a wonder to behold when singing ‘Mature Women Don’t Whine’.

The writing from Brandon Lambert and Martin Landry is wacky, in places it’s brilliant, in other’s it’s so bad it’s great! There are love stories, affairs with mermaids and characters getting stuck in conversational circles which cause groans from the audience and then lots of laughs! Not every joke lands, and some sections go on too long but generally it is well paced and well delivered.

The set design is simple and flat, which works wonderfully with the genre of a naff musical. Emily Bestow has taken a no frills approach and this works well with the piece. Simple beach backdrops, palm trees and sandy beach flooring means the setting is clear and impactful from the start.

This is a parody musical at it’s heart, it’s silly, stupid and great fun! The songs are similar to ones we already know with a hilarious twist to them. With summer on its way take a visit to the beach at Southwark Playhouse and don’t forget your sun cream!

This show was reviewed on the 30th May 2024 at Southwark Playhouse Borough where it runs until the 22nd June 2024.  Tickets available here: Fun At The Beach Romp-Bomp-A-Lomp!! - Southwark Playhouse

Review written by Rosie Browne


Photo credit: Danny Kaan

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You can watch our interview with Jack Whittle from the show here:

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