Today The Edinburgh Reporter met the cast of The City which is a hip hop musical tale of vanity, lust and murder, being staged at The Underbelly Cow Barn, Edinburgh, from Wednesday 30 July to Monday 25 August, for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2014.
The City is a contemporary crime fable written entirely in rhyme and performed as one continuous song (in English) combining rap, hip hop and spoken word with theatrical and poetic texts. Inspired by black music, hardboiled fiction and 40’s detective films it offers drama, comedy, razor-sharp wordplay and clever staging in equal measure.
Joe is a cynical and bitter private detective working in a corrupt and decaying city. One stormy night, a young mysterious woman enters his office and convinces him to start an investigation into the strange disappearance of her sister; a decision that could cost him his life.
This sharp and fast paced production includes elements of film noir, rap, hip hop, beat boxing and operatic style sung dialogue, all woven through a riveting murder mystery starring small-time detectives, sultry singers and hard-hitting policemen.
The City was written by Amit Ulman, Omer Havron, and Omer Mor, members of The Victor Jackson Show, a popular Israeli hip hop group, under the wing of Incubator Theatre. The production is directed by Amit Ulman, performed and created by its three writers, together with Dorit Lilien and Roni Rocket, with music by Omer Mor.
The musical arrangements use some unusual, minimalistic instruments including beatbox and vocal percussion, a metal bin, an upturned-plastic-tub-turned-drum and chopsticks, together with darbuka drum, classical guitar and keyboard.
The City at Underbelly from 30 July.