Posted on Jul 25, 2013
5 out of 5
Upon entering the theatre, there was a Click Five song playing which immediately took this audience member back to her tweenage years and first concert, which set the stage marvelously for the show.
Victoria Martin: Math Team Queen is a show for all ages. The audience members were of all ages and all were laughing uproariously. It is unabashedly sweet and fun theatre, which are two things that one really doesn’t see enough. Especially with the rest of the Fringe slate tending toward darker, edgy, or more mature comedy, it was a refreshing change. However, the show still deals with issues like bullying, parental neglect, sexuality, and female empowerment, with a light hand and a deft touch.
All of the actors brought high levels of enthusiasm, energy and physicality to their roles and were all fantastic. They were all totally believable as teens, regardless of their actual age.
Daria LaGrand leads the show with panache as the titular character and the disruptive force in the math squad’s lives. Victoria Martin is one of the most popular sophomores at the school, who is pushed into joining the math squad, to get out of trouble with a teacher. The all-male squad accepts her grudgingly as the school has told them they have to have a girl on the team.
Tyler Eisenreich and Zach Chaykin, play two best friends, who are jokingly called the Gemini, whose friendship is tested by change. Their chemistry and believability as friends, keeps the audience
invested in their relationship. Benjamin Fleer does good work as Peter, a senior with early acceptance to M.I.T and some control issues, who is the leader of the geeky gang. Aaron Dupuis as Jimmy, the freshman, with a crush on Victoria who wants to keep her on the team, was the perfect blend of pathetic and lovable.
The show was flawlessly produced, from the projections to set, costumes, and lighting. The cast sings songs while transitioning between scenes and sets, like “Hey Juliet” and “I’m Just a Kid.” Monologues form all the characters were interspersed throughout the show, giving an inside perspective on what they are going through as the events around them, unfold, as well as filling in the gaps of what has happened in between the scenes.
This show could easily come off as trite and occasionally veered into that territory, but it added more serious issues in a pleasantly subtle way.
The only failings of the show were the failings of its genre, so the ending was not unexpected nor was the fledging romance that springs up between unofficial math team captain Peter and Victoria. However, the journey was so filled with ecstatic fun and humor that the audience was swept along happily, leaving the theatre smiling and humming pop songs.