From Cambridge University Musical Theatre Society, the company that previously brought Six, and Rust to the Fringe, their latest offering, On Your Bike, a new musical by Ben James and Cambridge Footlight Joe Venable, is 50-minutes of toe-tapping fun and a modern musical for a modern audience dealing with modern themes.
Having a go at the fast-food online and delivery service (‘Eatsaroo’), corporate fast-food giants (KFK – ‘they spell their Chicken with a K!) and tackling subjects of zero-hours’ contracts, poverty, love, tough landlords, angry exes, and veganism, the four-strong cast, and musical director, deliver strong performances, with snappy songs and stand-out tight, polished choreography (Ella Palmer).
Two delivery riders, Gemma (Ella Nevill) and Aidan (Dominic Carrington), both barely scraping by, look like they might hit it off briefly – until Aidan’s head is turned by pint-sized Daisy (Emilia Grace), a smooth-talking, arrogant corporate executive who’s not the world’s most likable boss or girl-friend. Then there’s a subplot about Felicity (Claire Lee Shenfield), the owner of a tiny chicken shop trying to stop a big fast-food chain from moving in over the road.
On Your Bike may have all the makings of stereotypical musical theatre but it also blends rock and jazz, with the occasional dash of salsa and hip hop and even tap-dancing. For those familiar with the catchy tunes of Six, think humorous rhyming couplets sowing the seeds of the story, juxtaposed with cheesy, yet amusing lines.
Just as online delivery services fuel our appetite, On Your Bike delivers a satisfying 50-minutes of professional, entertaining performances for any musical theatre fan.