Hamilton audiences are about to get a life lesson in more than just geography, writes Mike Mather . --------------------
BE THERE What: Miss Fletcher Sings the Blues Where: Meteor Theatre When: June 25-29 Tickets: $25 from iticket.co.nz Website: cubacreative.co.nz --------------------
Miss Fletcher: Motivator, inspirer, teacher and moustache enthusiast.
Returning to Hamilton following a successful season at the Hamilton Gardens Arts Festival earlier this year, and fresh from appearances at the New Zealand Fringe Festival, Hayley Sproull's one-woman show Miss Fletcher Sings the Blues is making its way back to Hamilton.
Hailed as a musical comedy with educational benefits, the show stars Sproull as the the titular daring, desirable and dangerous Miss Fletcher.
Miss Fletcher is a well-meaning, but slightly unhinged music teacher who treats an unwitting geography class of teenage boys - the audience - to a surprise music lesson, gifting the boys their very own tools for self expression.
Over the course of the show, she tries valiantly to connect with the class through a series of musical numbers, touching on everything from the trials of adolescence to her own insatiable lust for mustachioed men.
Tackling the big issues of the world, her songs such as Key Changes for Africa, Puberty Express and Moustache Paradise make for an overall performance that has brought comparisons with the likes of Tim Minchin and Flight of the Conchords.
However nothing can prepare the class for the end of the lesson, as Miss Fletcher expresses a little too much.
Miss Fletcher Sings the Blues has received glowing reviews, including from the Waikato Times' Sam Edwards, who declared it "no ordinary stand up routine. This is timeless comedy and you will love it.
"The set pieces are songs accompanied on a virtuoso piano - here a keyboard - which demonstrates an exquisitely disciplined musicianship and a vocal control which is classical in its excellence and as entertaining as all get out in its delivery.
"Puberty becomes the lens through which she focuses the human condition, and she delivers with a wit and a sense of the ridiculous which is verbal gold."
Sproull is a Wellington-based actor, comedian and musician. She is a 2011 graduate of Toi Whakaari: NZ Drama School, where she earned a Bachelor of Performing Arts in acting.
Sproull's passion for comedy is a life-long love, leading her to create a number of successful comedy works, and earning an array of praise and accolades, including best newcomer at the New Zealand International Comedy Festival 2012 and a Chapman Tripp Theatre Award for most promising female newcomer in 2013. When she isn't writing, performing or composing, you'll find her on the marching fields as a member of the champion marching drill team, Lochiel.
What: Miss Fletcher Sings the Blues
Where: Meteor Theatre
When: June 25-29
Tickets: $25 from iticket.co.nz