Internationally acclaimed singer, songwriter and pianist Joe Stilgoe returns to the Fringe for the last week, hot footing it from London where he has been appearing in the Old Vic’s production of High Society.
Songs on Film: the Sequel sees film nerd Stilgoe playing the smallest piano ever, paying tribute to a hundred years of legendary Hollywood cinema through its iconic music and theme tunes. From An American in Paris to Whiplash and Caravan, this jazz trio work their magic on the music from these iconic films.
As with all sequels, there’s some old favourites from last year, but Stilgoe also has some new material, including a mash-up of film songs from the 80s, the era in which he and his band-mates grew up, asking the audience to shout out the names of the film songs he is playing. It’s like Ken Bruce’s Pop Master but for film, with the audience struggling for the answers as he takes us on a whistle-stop tour of classics including Back to the Future, Rocky II, Pretty Woman and Dirty Dancing.
There’s a touching tribute to Robin Williams starring as Patch Adams with Stilgoe singing the first song he learned, Blue Skies, and an equally beautiful rendition of Falling Slowly from Once. His quick witted improvisation of a compilation of theme tunes from the audience’s favorite films is just pure genius and shows what a talented musician he is, interweaving them seamlessly together.
A fine songwriter capturing lyrical images with a beautifully mellow jazz voice, Stilgoe is one gifted entertainer that leaves you foot-tapping the entire performance with a contented smile on your face.