FRINGEWORLD 2017 – Four in Fifty: A Mini Musical Marathon (3.5 stars)

Review by Laura Money

Are you in the mood for a musical but don’t want to sit down for four hours of characters lamenting their losses in a historical era you can’t remember? Well Hand in Hand have you covered with Nick Choo’s award-winning musicals.

Each piece is 10 minutes long, and is a musical in its entirety. Choo introduces the show and the players, cheekily joking that he can’t sing, but they can. Choo’s intro is a bit clumsy and stilted and might need polishing for future shows. The first piece tells of children lost, from the panic of a child wandering off at the shops to the wider problem of child trafficking and hostile family relationships. The idea is good, but the lyrics are a bit lacklustre, considering the topic.

Next is a charming little work involving two star-crossed Jack-in-the-Boxes. The composition is charming and playful with an undercurrent of tragedy. Both performers are perfect – they keep it light but evoke emotion with their soft delivery – neglected toys in an iPhone world.

Third is a unique piece using the voice of a sat-nav to navigate the ups and downs of a relationship. This is good but a little over-sung for such a small space. It’s a nice little piece but not groundbreaking. The final piece sees the singers as unborn children waiting to enter the world. It’s fun, energetic and optimistic and takes full advantage of the remarkable harmonies the singers can achieve.


Four in Fifty is ambitious and unique, however the lyrics are a tad incongruous to the song at times and the singers are a bit too loud, although this could just be the venue. Lose the American accents and you have four unique Austro-Malaysian mini musicals.


When: 24th – 28th January 2017, 6pm and 7:30pm

Where: The Laneway Lounge, PERTH

Tickets: From $16

Info: Duration 60 mins, suitable all ages