Tabletop (the musical)

mb stage productions, llc · Ages 12+ · United States of America

family friendly world premiere
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Review by IAN PRICE

June 19, 2019 certified reviewer

What I liked

Every charecter was distinct and well acted. The story presented their problems in a very organic way…sometimes immediatly, sometimes over time. The writing was pretty well executed, and the acting was generally quite solid. There appeared to be a pretty distinct direction to have all real life charecters act in a more realistic manner, while any in-game NPC charecters acted in a more hightened state. It was a well appreciated choice that I think worked for the betterment of the piece.

The music for the most part was great, with the big standouts being in my mind the Opening “Valerune” song and “Mind over Might”.

I enjoyed some of the creative way they brought some of the creatures to life, especially the Lich. I look foward to seeing a full performance with a bigger budget where more of these creative choices can be made.

What I didn't like

A big issue I had was that the music would overpower the actors singing on stage. I sat near the back, and there were often times I couldn’t hear the lyrics. Sometimes in Fringe, you are stuck with a space that might not be accustically compatible for a musical. Sometimes technical issues that cannot be fixed are the cause. Sometimes it’s because you have an actor who has trouble projecting while singing. I think this might be a mix of the 3, that could easily be fixed if all the actors were mic’d. But, alas, we can’t get everything we want.

The show does need some tightening up, expecially since it runs about 2 hours and 20ish minutes right now. Probably the best way to do this would to get rid of the game store charecter. Nothing against the charecter, or the actress who plays her. I actually thought Katie Maple was one of the stand-out performances in this show. But if you were to take her charecter out, the rest of the charecters would be minimumally effected, as opposed to any of the other charecters. That being said, she’s a good charecter, just not a proactive one. Just my two cents on the matter.

My overall impression

A pretty cleaver musical about a small friend-group united around their love for D&D and Tabletop RPGs. Solid acting, singing, choreography, including some fights that just made me go “oh man, that sounded like it hurt.” Though it feels a bit long, if you can fit it into your schedule, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

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