Theatre Review: Avenue Q
Cliffs Pavilion, Southend
Running until: Saturday, 23 June
T: 01702 351135
Review by: Michelle Norris
ERUPTIONS of laughter echo through the Cliffs Pavilion Theatre as two Sesame Street style puppets simulate sex on stage while Gary Coleman sings You Can Be as Loud as the Hell You Want (When You’re Makin’ Love) – if that’s too shocking, then Avenue Q is definitely not for you. But for me? I loved every minute!
Based on the children’s TV series Sesame Street with an adult twist, the show features nine puppet characters, talented puppeteers and three ‘real people’ as College Graduate (and puppet) Princeton tries to find his ‘purpose’ in life.
Dealing with everything in life from relationships, homosexuality right through to porn and racism, this is a show with the shock factor. But I have to admit, hearing a puppet swear live on stage really made my night.
And although the puppeteers aren’t hidden from view, something that I initially thought would be a distraction, it was refreshing to see how talented the cast are, not just as puppeteers but as actors too.
Juggling a number of characters, they seamlessly transformed from one to another, even throwing their voices when they couldn’t be in control of their own puppet.
Even though my favourite puppet has to be Trekkie Monster, whose number; The Internet is for Porn got the most laughs on the night, the emotional highlight for me was when puppeteer Katherine Moraz took to the stage as Kate Monster, to sing There’s a fine, fine line.
My stroll along Avenue Q was somewhat educational. I learned that everyone’s a little bit racist, there’s a fine line between love and wasting your time and the Internet is for porn. Now, who would have known that?