If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times; I have nothing but respect for those brave souls who combine improvisational comedy and music. In Rap Rap Rappin’ on Heaven’s Door (not, despite the name, in any way religious, just a decent pun) RHYMEZONE (Cristina “Rhyme” Spizzica and Jeremy “Zone” Hughes) attempt each night to create an almost Hamilton-esque hour long rap musical, based on a one word audience suggestion. On the night I attended, that word was “carrot”, and what resulted was, in the words of Rhyme herself, one of the silliest shows they had done so far.
In a world where top hats are a symbol of status, carrot farmer Margarine tires of tilling the fields with her brother Jeremiah (who seems to think that – among other things – Baby Carrots come from when a Mummy Carrot and a Daddy Carrot love each other very much, they…you know…), and seeks a new life. After a three day Starcraft II bender, she discovers that her carrots lack value, and hatches a plot of destabilise the economy by decreasing their availability (based on the laws of supply/demand). Meanwhile, a duo of hat makers increase their own influence by supplying hats to everyone while keeping the nicest (one saying “CEO”) to themselves. There’s also some Communist horses…
Spizzica and Hughes having been making a name for themselves at Melbourne’s famed Improv Conspiracy. They’re an energetic and entertaining duo, who also aren’t afraid to laugh at themselves. To my mind, the success of an improv show relies heavily on the relationship between the performers and the audience, how quickly they can “win you over”, because so much of it is based on the acceptance that what you are about to see is, for obvious reasons, unrehearsed and unpolished. I’m very happy to say their enthusiasm and likeability is obvious from the go, and more than accommodates for them not being able to rhyme every…instance.
With each performance being different by their very nature it’s hard to say what to expect on any given night, other than that you’ll have fun. RHYMEZONE are a team to watch, as they emerge into the Melbourne scene, alongside such contemporaries as Impromptunes.
Rap Rap Rappin’ On Heaven’s Door is on 8pm at Club Voltaire until 30 September 2018 as part of Melbourne Fringe. Tickets are available from the Melbourne Fringe website.