From the word go you can’t deny that this clever show, the brain child of drunken ramblings between star Sam Haughton and co-writer/director Claire Rivers, does exactly what it says on the tin. I wasn’t sure what to expect when first stepping into the London Theatre Workshop in Fulham but was immediately greeted with the sight of an impressive collection of bath and shower accessories ranging from some Lush classics to an over-sized rubber duck. I knew we were in for a good night.
The one-man show (with musical direction thanks to the talented Terence Penk) is a fun and crafty display of Sam’s guilty musical pleasures. During the show he comments on the slight frustration of song choice limitations in a career in musical theatre and it was a joy to hear such a gifted performer belt out a set list that most male singers would not usually touch; a set list that included the wonders of Disney’s Frozen and an amusing but brilliant solo rendition of I Know Him So Well from Chess, with help from some fun bath time friends of course!
Sam’s voice is a dream to hear in this setting, a joy to watch as a performer and not afraid to show a little skin. Luckily Ruth Walford’s seamstress talents kept dignity in tact although one audience member may have needed a moment to calm down after a certain strategic towel drop!
He glided seamlessly from song to song but also from witty monologue to song. The words kept you hooked just as much as the vocal numbers. His musings on the power of the shower curtain for all of us were wonderfully stimulating and this was all down to Sam’s faultless delivery as well as Claire’s remarkable scripting.
But the concert had an even more thoughtful and personal side to it which many in the audience didn’t prepare for. Sam’s touching tribute to his late grandfather brought tears to most eyes in the room and the feelings that come with loss were relatable to us all. After all, after a tough day don’t we all just want to run to the shower and hide ourselves from the world?
Songs from the Shower is a stunning piece of theatre and has luckily been given a second date to add to the success of Friday’s performance. The London Theatre Workshop is a lovely venue; intimate but perfect for this type of performance and you can tell that the staff are fully behind the shows they host there. A little hot in the summer but when you are blessed with such a talented production you can overlook a little sweat and discomfort. Just imagine how Sam felt underneath those stage lights (which along with the rest of tech were brilliant).
As part of the Fringe on the Fringe Festival produced by Jamie Chapman Dixon which continues into August, the show will run again on Thursday 31st July and tickets are still available from their website now.