Review: The Light Princess: a musical production.

So recently the soundtrack to Tori Amos’ musical theatre production The Light Princess has been released onto Amazon and Itunes. Haven’t heard of it? Not surprised really; the show was open at the National Theatre in London in mid to late 2013; to which it later fell of the radar meaning that the show is no longer on at the theatre. Which given the quality of the show itself; that’s absolute shame. Mainly because it’s definitely a theatre experience worth going to; so I hope a DVD recording of the show comes out, because I’d by that on Blu-ray no questions asked.

I saw the show as part of a course for my high school musical theatre class; in which we had to learn about the style of theatre used in the production; along with writing a review of it. Despite me now being out of high school and in college; i still have the report. So i found it ,recited it and it’s right here for you to read to explain why you should buy this soundtrack; you won’t regret it.

No I’m not being sponsored by Amazon; shut up. Here’s my review. Enjoy.

The story of the musical can be described as a dark fairy tale version of Romeo and Juliet.  In which there are two kingdoms that hate each other, in this case the kingdoms are The Kingdom of the Sea (the antagonist) and The Kingdom of the Desert (the kingdom of the protagonist).  The plot centers on a young princess named Althea, a princess with out gravity and spends the majority of the story floating around the stage on wires and stage hands moving her around. Anyway to make a long story short after escaping from her dad who is fed up with her less than serious attitude and her ability to float and unwilling to become queen of the land. Althea and prince Digby of the rival kingdom meet up and fall in love with each other and the two kingdoms start to break out into war. Instead of the death of a family member; it’s rivalry over the land in general.

The first positive thing that can be said about the Light Princess is the staging and the special effects that are used. The effects that used on stage are absolutely fantastic and highly creative. This can be seen in scenes when Althea is floating, the show use wires for most of her scenes, but when there is also use physical theatre, in which three stage members are pulling her down to the ground, climbing on the set with the actress attached to their bodies or balancing the actress on their feet to make it look like she is really floating of the ground. Yes all three of them balance a five foot woman on their feet; that is determination for their craft. All of this created a fantastic effect as if the actress was really floating up and down on stage, showing of the sense of wonder the shows trying to give the audience.

Also the rest of the effects, scenery and costumes are done very well. The locations were very bright, large and colorful; each location had its own unique look and feel; like the sea kingdom in a blue military style look and the dessert kingdom characters were looking like something from Aladdin; especially Althea’s father. This as a result made each location every remember able and different from each other. All of the costumes had their own styles and were every colorful and well designed.

The cast members operating the effects were also working with puppets. Such as birds, the falcon and even creatures of the forest, all the puppetry was done excellently as well-looking like the animals there meant to look like, while giving out emotions and interacting with the events on stage.
In terms of the musical sides of things, it is absolutely amazing. With the high light being the actress who plays Althea (Rosalie Craig) . Who gives of loads of emotion in her voice and has a lot of range in her performance, which gave out a lot of weight and power during her solo numbers. Also the actor plays Digby does a very good job as well. When the two perform duets together, the singing is still fantastically done and the two actors work brilliantly of each other as performers. Althea being stubborn while Digby is more straight-faced; which leads to very well done banter between the two; their first meeting (the song “Althea”) being an example. Along with a very well done musical score, which brought out the tone and emotions of the scenes, and helped gave the songs more impact.

However what really hurts the show as a whole is the story. A side from the floating parts of the story which cleverly used the effects as part of the story. As i mentioned the story is a mix of Romeo and Juliet, Beauty and the Beast and Gravity as done by the team behind Once Upon a Time. It has the same plot structure of Romeo and Juliet where: the prince and princess of rival kingdoms fall in love, the two kingdoms find out, the two get separated and then back together by the end; Spoiler warning but the show even features a similar ending, that is just like the Shakespeare play. Not only that but a lot of the plot points were really predictable such as: the two get back together after being separated, the father and daughter bounding together and the ending itself once all the plot points are resolved, if you’ve seen the show you’ll properly agree.

But however in the end; the characters were very like able and had some interesting story arch’s which made us want to continue watching and route for them. In short the story isn’t really original, but it does make up with good characters we grown to like as the story goes on performed by talented actors.  With fantastic stage work and special effects which makes the show look gorgeous to watch.

Thank you for your time.