MORE THAN TRACY TURNBLAD, Space/on-demand
Oh, oh, oh… Abby Rose Morris brings her solo cabaret show More than Tracy Turnblad at the Edinburgh Fringe. Produced by Madonna/Whore productions, the performer, podcaster and TikTok creator challenges body norms and fatphobia prevalent in the entertainment industry.
With a title like this, it’s no surprise the show begins with a blackout and the iconic “Good Morning Baltimore” opening riff with Morris appearing in the classic tartan skirt, white blouse and hive – did she borrow it from the recent UK tour? We then continue to enjoy a mix of enthusiastically sung numbers from the rather limited canon of “plus size” musical theater characters.
Between the songs there are personal anecdotes and rants about BMI, skinny celebrities in big suits (looking at you Monica Geller) and more. Morris is an engaging and endearing storyteller, although her impassioned performances sometimes prevent her from demonstrating her vocal prowess. Her rendition of “Sexy” by mean girls is a highlight – this reviewer is definitely here for a little more size diversity among the plastics!
With numbers from Nasty, aerial combat, West Side Story moreover, Morris is skillfully accompanied by a pianist in the room. Morris’ rendition of “Send in the Clowns” draws the viewer in as things take on a more serious note as they consider what the onstage and offstage performance looks like, with proper spot lighting.
Defying stereotypes and full of showmanship, More than Tracy Turnblad is a thoughtful and uplifting show for fans of musicals, body positivity, and more.
More Than Tracy Turnblad at Space on the Mile until August 20 then at Space @ Surgeons’ Hall until August 27, and also online