Murder Ballad – Musical

Type: Rock Musical

Recommendation: A thousand times “yes!” I loved it so much that I bought the soundtrack and brought a crowd of my coworkers to see it a second time.

Negatives: Low budget production (but HIGH talent)

Story, Script, and Lyrics: Rock musical with the simple classic tale of lovers, secrets, lies … and MURDER! No complex bullshit. Just one act. All lines were lyrics except for the spoken dramatic climax.

Cast and Theater Company: Sidecountry Theater provided a class act. I could have easily seen this quality in a touring Broadway production. I was surprised to learn that none the actors were Equity Actors!

  • Sara Henley Hicks: What a powerful voice! A commanding presence on the stage is important as the narrator and she provided this strong leadership while weaving the audience through the simple storyline.
  • Naomi Morgan: Like a car, she sometimes had to get warmed up first before belting her lyrics. Don’t let that fool you though. When she gets going, you’ll feel goosebumps!
  • Jordan Iosua Taylor: Nice eye candy 😉 That pretty face (and body!) comes with a soothing steady voice. Despite his “bad boy” persona, I could hear a hints of classical training. Still it worked well with this rock musical.
  • Nick Watson: Not sure if his stiff performance was intentional as the stereotypical “nice guy” who lives next door and finishes last. His voice also wasn’t as strong as his other counterparts and I could tell that it was harder for him to reach some notes. These slight technicalities were barely noticeable and didn’t detract too much from his performance.

Venue and Set: West of Lenin is a tiny little theater. This particular production had an immersive-style set within the audience. Basically, the actors were sometimes literally one foot in front of you and might have even touched you. Nice single bathrooms. Drinks were allowed inside the set/audience.

Music and Audio: Live music didn’t overpower the actors. I wasn’t a huge fan of the synthesized piano and drums but that’s what you usually get from a non-touring group. The cast used a great wireless microphone system. I was actually surprised they used one given the small venue’s size.

Price: $ – Cheap!

Dates: 11-19-2016 to 11-13-2016

Seating: Open seating