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Menopause the Musical
05/07/2007
Star Two
GREAT BALL ON STAGE
By Saras Manickam

Nothing is too sensitive for Menopause the Musical. No symptom too delicate to mention. Everything and I mean everything – hot flushes (er, flashes), night sweating, insomnia, weight gain, food cravings, cellulite, mood swings, plummeting sex drive – everything is laid out in the open and celebrated to great fun and in-your-face humour. It is this directness and refreshing honesty that makes this musical a must-see experience.
The 21 songs are lifted from famous hits of the 1960s and 70s with sing-along lyrics cleverly changed to fit the mood and theme of the play. So the Bee Gees' Night Fever becomes Night Sweating (‘you've got that night sweating, night sweating!'); Staying Alive becomes Staying Awake; Looking for Love becomes Looking for Food ("suck in my gut to zip up my blue jeans/ ah elastic waist know what that means") The result: a very funny take on menopause and its dreaded symptoms.

Four women meet at a Bloomingdale's sale where they fight over a lace bra. The entire musical is set in the department store. The characters are archetypes – Earth Mother who hasn't evolved from being a 1960s hippie; Iowa housewife – prim, proper and confused; Power Woman in her business suit and loud voice and Aging Soap Star who still wants to play the honey trap.

Theme aside, it is the actors who hold the play together. With immense chutzpah, they sizzle; they shake their bums; they parody famous poses; they have one great big ball on stage.

And the best part? When a twenty-something member of the audience turned to her friend and said: "I can't wait to hit menopause!"

Whatever your gender, you will enjoy Menopause the Musical. It's honest, completely politically incorrect and insensitive. You'll love it.