Zest Theatre Group
Victor Harbor Town Hall
Until 09 Feb 2020

Review by Luke Wagner

In recent times one of the most popular sources for Broadway is to adapt a musical has been from film. We have seen everything from Disney films to “School of Rock” adapted into musical format. “Heathers” takes it origins from the cult classic film starring Winona Ryder.

Veronica has always flown under the radar at school. Never noticed by the popular kids and resigned to life with her only friend Martha. Things change dramatically for Veronica when she becomes part of the ultra-popular machine that is The Heathers – Heather Chandler, Heather Duke and Heather McNamara. When the mean girls inevitable make her life a living hell, Veronica finds solace in the arms of mysterious bad boy JD. But things get a little out of hand when the body count amongst her class starts to grow.

Lily-Mae Van Rhoda was a strong lead as Veronica. Her small stature was made up for in spades by her fantastic acting and quality singing voice. Isobel Pitt, Tia Stevenson and Matilda Boysen all gave fantastic performances as the mean Heathers. They worked well together and it was fun to see their dynamic. Harrison Golledge gave a solid performance as the dark, twisted JD. His unique vocals added an interesting element to the songs. Scott Murton and Bradley Riley as the two jocks were entertaining in their roles. A surprise stand out of the night was Ava-Rose Askew who gave a brilliant performance as Victoria’s’ cast-aside geeky friend Martha. Askew delivered one of the shows finest vocal performances in with her emotional song “Kindergarten Boyfriend”. It was a moment that really stood out in this show.

Production wise this show was positive overall, but there were a few elements that need some work. Scene changes were painfully slow and long silences didn’t help the situation. Sound levels were off with some cast with mics and others not – which means those with single lines in group numbers lead to silences. The vocals need to come up a touch overall. The set was simple yet effective and worked well as the school setting.

This show covers some heavy subjects which the mostly youth cast did with great professionalism and humour. They all clearly understood their characters and the highly divided high school culture that “Heathers” is known for. Overall, this was a fun and entertaining production.