Saturday 24th April 2010 saw Rob Miller bring a new dimension to LAMPS incorporating modern cinematic facilities of the Liphook Millennium Hall, with their kind permission, into a brand new idea for Theatre in Liphook. Rob wrote and directed a script, "Xanadu, home for stressed professionals", that wonderfully combined a sense of humour, with strong popular songs and video; yes I did say video.
With a cast of familiar faces and singing voices, plus new addition Rakesh Patel, Rob had the audience enthralled with this new Musical. In simplicity, the scene was set for a "Residential Home" somewhere in Liphook, that cared for those who had professional careers, but had let the stresses of life take over; or so it first seemed. In fact it was all a con, by the resident doctor (Clemency Bray) and her conniving accountant (Steve Skeet) to get more funds from the council. We saw four patients (Rakesh, Sylvia Wallis, Karen Feeney and Rob himself) comatose with a newly invented drug, Black Velvet. However, an ingenious professor (Steve Baker) had invented a gizmo that allowed us to see the residents dreams, yes you guessed it, on the big big cinema screen in the hall. The audience loved the dream sequences and were in stitches as miniature Sylia (all five foot of her) dreamt of being a superhero who sorted out litter louts and noisy neighbours whilst Sylvia and the team performed a live rendition of "Eye of the Tiger". A powerful rendition of "Space Odyssey" to a backdrop of rockets and cartoons, much fun was had, which could be said of all the dreams, and other songs. With Gill Jones and Luca Whiteway playing unscrupulous representatives from the council, the audience saw a twist to the story when they in turn conned the doctor and accountant into handing over the profits. It was great for for all, audience and actors alike. Much thanks should be given to Rob and his daughter, Heather, for the many hours and hours they put in, to produce and edit the video items. Unique for Liphook it certainly was. Watch out for more possibilities of a sequel sometime in the future.
Review by Dave Rowlandson