Review: Kid Victory at the Vineyard2 min read

At first glance, the musical, Kid Victory (book and lyrics by Greg Pierce; music by John Kander), is not a story that begs to be made into a musical. Nothing of the plot screams, write a song about this. And maybe that’s why it packs the punch that it does.

It is by no means perfect, and there are difficulties of flow throughout but it certainly is a captivating story. A teenage boy is abducted by an older male predator and held captive in his basement. Once he is able to get out, he than has to deal with his return to a world left behind. Much like the film, Room, the return is not the salvation one assumes. As skillfully directed by Liesl Tommy (Eclipsed), safety is filled with difficulties of the sort we can’t imagine.

It turns out that the young man before the abduction wanted an escape from his safe but oppressive home life and suffocating social circle, something I would fathom that any teenager who doesn’t connect to their parents’ world and religion can understand. So the main question asked is which is the greater prison for our young man, the basement of his captor, or the restrictive religiosity of his home life? In a broader sense,the choice between embracing your sexuality or your family’s religiosity especially if they don’t line up, may be what Kid Victory is really about.

The cast of Kid Victory. Photo by Carol Rosegg.

Luke, played with a deep understanding of the conflict that resides within by the immensely talented Brandon Flynn, is the teenage boy at the center of this nervy musical.  Fascinatingly, he doesn’t sing one song or even one note throughout, although the musical does revolve around his tortured soul. It’s through his actions that we get a sense of his inner turmoil….. He just wants to disappear. The set also reflects his conflicted soul, as all the scenes take place within the same small space. Forever are the chains and bare mattress of the jail cell basement in the center of the drama that circulates around Luke.  This sometimes cluttered and clumsy arrangement, make for a disturbing window inside Luke’s jumbled brain…Many of the other numbers vary in their successful integration with the story but all sound magnificent in structure and performance… (for the full review, clink here)

Review: Present Laughter on Broadway