Lock and Key

Lock and Key – An Original Musical by Barlow & Smith at the Vault Festival.

When I heard about Lock and Key, on at The Vault Festival and the team they had amassed to put the show on, I knew I had to see it. Starring Evelyn Hoskins and Tiffany Graves and directed by Adam Lenson these are 3 people who I greatly admire their past work! I therefore had high hopes for this show.

Lock and Key - Tiffany Graves

Photos by: Nick Brittain Photograph

Lock and Key is set in an office. Samantha, played by Graves expects more from her assistant, Jess played by Hoskins, than a typical employee may be wiling to deliver. Jess, left with Samantha’s keys is overwhelmed with curiosity and makes a grisly discovery within her files, leaving Jess to decide how far she is willing to go in order to progress with her career.

The show runs at 50 minutes, actually shorter than its advertised time but even considering this short running time not a huge amount happens. The scene is set beautifully by Barlow & Smith but the climax is rushed and under developed. The show also struggles to find a consistent style. I left feeling unclear as to if it was aiming for a thriller or if it was a comedy as at times it sat in an awkward place straddled between the two.

Lock and Key - Evelyn HoskinsThe music and lyrics do little to resolve this issue. An Avenue Q-esq moment during a number called ‘Giggles The Bear’ highlighted this perfectly, where I was unclear if I should be creeped out or laughing. Additionally leaving the Vaults I struggled to remember any of the melodies or any refrains from the score, a huge issue that Barlow & Smith need to resolve.

Despite the above both Graves and Hoskins are perfectly cast within their respective roles. Graves comes across as oddly cold and callous whilst maintaining an air of class about her whilst Hoskins delivers a balanced and relatable Jess. They also bounced well off each other in all manners and their vocals blended nicely whilst remaining distinctive.

Lock and Key’s struggle to find it’s identity combined with its rushed climax unfortunately means it’s more confusing than compelling, despite the leading ladies giving stellar performances.

If you liked the review you might also like my review of The Producers (starring Tiffany Graves) and my review of Songs For A New World and Superhero, both directed by Adam Lenson.

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