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The Voice Factor [X] – New Theatre – Review

Review: The Voice Factor [X]

The TV talent show is one of the great misnomers of popular culture. Quincy finds out all about this and the trappings of fame in The Voice Factor, which opened on Monday night to very positive reviews.


Initially tricked into auditioning for this mishmash of prominent popularity contests, he goes along for the ride and soon finds it enjoyable, alluring. Living the dream that he never had, he’s a pawn who convinces himself that he could be King. Pampered by make-up artists and a flatteringly glib fan base, the changes aren’t simply skin deep.


It’s an exciting writing debut from Michael-David McKernan, who plays Quincy as a sort of everyman. Daryl McCormack joins him on stage as everyone else. His characters range from a German PR guy to an American celebrity judge with everything in between. It really is a hilarious comic performance. A deliciously hollow sound bite about a ticket to the moon was one of many lines that had me howling.


To create an authentic ambience, the lighting (Shane Gill) and sound design (Seamus Ryan) are top quality, succeeding in mimicking the dazzling lights of the shows it’s critiquing. While it nails the tropes and cliches, it appears to have unintentionally fallen victim to a reasonably undercooked sob story of its own with Quincy and his father.


Then again, when paired with Quincy’s treatment of his best friend Twank, it shows how he’s losing his identity. The messages delivered via phone and CD were clever and funny mediums to show the breakdown of their relationship and to further display how Quincy is losing his identity in this rat race. While it could be said that it’s a bit late to the ‘commenting on TV singing contest’ party, it’s a thorough and well-written spoof and critique of the genre.

Plus, it’s very, very funny. And you know what? You deserve to laugh. Go to see it by booking tickets here.

Companion piece: Seek out the ‘Fifteen Million Merits’ episode from the first series of Black Mirror.

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