Hills Musical Company Inc
Stirling Community Theatre
Until 20 Nov 2021

Review by Ross Johnston

On Friday night I had the great pleasure of seeing the opening night of “High Fidelity” put on by the Hills Musical Company at the Stirling Community Theatre. Wow! What a great show put on by an energetic, enthusiastic and very talented cast.

The plot revolves around the breakup between the self-centred Rob (played by the talented Michael Butler) and his “hot” ex (played by the equally talented Kristin Stefanoff) and how he finally gets her back into his life. In between there are memories of exes, infidelity and incredible scenes of life experiences all seen mainly through the eyes of Rob who acts as the narrator on many occasions. Both have dalliances with other people. Rob with the alluring singer, Marie LaSalle (Rachel Da Costa) and Laura with the ‘boring”, interventionalist Ian (Jay Mancuso). Every cast member gave strong performances including Jen McKinnon as Liz the close friend to both Laura, and Rob ‘TMPMITW” played by Adam Goodburn. You’ll have to see the show to understand what the letters mean.

One unique moment in the performance occurs in the Second Act where Ian goes to Rob’s store to discuss the situation. Rob, Barry and Dick act out three different scenarios of what they want to do to Ian. Each is violent backed up by the appropriate music. However, after each scenario is concluded, they “rewind” the action and then proceed to the next scenario. While I’m use to seeing such things in films and on TV but, to see such complex movements repeated in reverse order not once but three times was incredible. The audience responded to this scene with thunderous applause and laughter too. I asked a friend of mine who was in the audience who is involved in theatre and he said that he could only remember one other show with a similar scene but it was not as complex or as long as the “High Fidelity” scene. Well done to the Cast, Director and Choreographer for achieving such a high standard in producing three scenarios and reversing them so professionally.

The main set is Rob’s music store which attracts a variety of “interesting” customers/visitors as well as his two staff members, the insecure and timid Dick played superbly by Lindsay Prodea and Barry played the charismatic Omkar Nagesh. I was very impressed with the construction of the shelves of records and congratulations to Mark Anolak, Malcolm Harper and their crew on creating such a realistic set.

All technical departments should be proud of their work on this production as I saw no flaws in any area which is great for an opening night.

The quality of the performance was evident when after the finale and the house light came on, I could see and hear the aura of happiness from the audience who were, like me, thoroughly entertained and leaving with a sense of having a “great night out.” This is a NOT TO BE MISSED SHOW. Definitely get your tickets and be entertained by this great production.