Seize The Cheese

"It's the comedy where this show really shines"

The New Wimbledon Theatre Studio space has been taken over by some cheese fanatics in the zany comedy musical!

This new musical is loosely inspired by the world-famous cheese-rolling in Gloucestershire, and we follow some of the latest participants as they prepare to take on this terrifying feat. We learn all about their lives and their motivations for wanting to ‘Seize The Cheese’. It doesn’t take itself too seriously and though there are some lovely heartfelt moments it’s the comedy where this show really shines. At times it does feel a little disjointed and the changes in timeline and location are not always clear which can feel confusing. 

There is a narrator to the story in the form of ‘Keeper of the Cheese’ played by Cathy McManamon. This is a kooky character who is quite literally away with the fairies but at times it can feel as though the ‘dazed’ energy of the character comes across more as confused and stupid. 

Over the course of the evening we meet several characters all with their own motives for taking part in the challenge, Phobia Phil played by James Dangerfield, being the only one with any real character development as he changes from a man scared of everything to one who feels he can take on any challenge life throws at him. 

We also meet Jake, a man struggling with impotence, this is a role played perfectly by Fed Zanni who has an incredible voice and ability to portray the vulnerable nature of the part. 

The real standout is Travis Wood as the cheese itself, a hilarious performance which shows off his immense vocal talents as well as his comedy skills. 

There were some sound issues on the evening of seeing this show, in that the band is live in the room and the fact the actors don’t have microphones means that so many lyrics and scenes are lots. This makes it hard to follow the story or really become immersed in the world. 

When able to hear the songs they were greatly enjoyable, with the odd earworm that will definitely be stuck in my head for a couple of days! 

When seeing a show that centres itself around a large wheel of double Gloucester I expected more cheese, there were several missed opportunities for a good cheese pun! 

With some small refinements to script and maybe a larger venue so the sound of the band does not take over then this could be a fantastic show! 

This show was reviewed on the 6th November.  Seize The Cheese runs at the New Wimbledon Theatre until the 11th November 2023.  Tickets available here: Seize The Cheese! A New Musical Tickets | Studio at New Wimbledon Theatre in Greater London | ATG Tickets

Review written by Rosie Browne

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