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Drip review at Roundabout, Summerhall, Edinburgh – ‘sweet but slight musical about synchronised swimming’

Andrew Finnigan in Drip at Roundabout, Summerhall, Edinburgh
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Tom Wells is master of the adorkable. There’s a lovely, gentle, huggable quality to his plays. And that continues here, although perhaps less potently than in previous work.

Liam is 15 and making a presentation in assembly in order to win the Project Prize – and win back his best friend Caz. He explains how he learned to swim and joined a synchronised swimming team. Actor Andrew Finnigan stands in the middle of the Paines Plough Roundabout in school uniform, at a microphone, with a guitar.

What follows is a sweet but slight musical about friendship and love and pride. It’s full of really wonderful bits – like the audience all donning blue ponchos to represent the pool where Liam is learning to swim – but doesn’t string together brilliantly.

Finnigan’s delivery, deadpan and full of gawky slowdowns and stops, is just a little too casual. For a story in which nothing really happens, there needs to be a snappier pace to distract from the fact that nothing really happens.

Matthew Robins’ songs are particularly good – catchy, meandering ditties played (deliberately?) badly by Finnigan on the guitar – and there’s a nice through-line about owning your awkwardness.

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Verdict
Sweet but slight musical about synchronised swimming and friendship
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