REVIEW: Albert Einstein: Relativitively Speaking, The Customs House, South Shields

FUN AND EDUCATIONAL ... John Hinton in comedy musical Albert Einstein: Relativitively Speaking.
FUN AND EDUCATIONAL ... John Hinton in comedy musical Albert Einstein: Relativitively Speaking.

SCIENCE + music = fun in this fantastically hilarious show from Tangram Theatre Company.

In the second of a trilogy of scientific musical comedies, which kicked off last year with the story of Charles Darwin, actor John Hinton became the world’s most famous theoretical physicist, Albert Einstein.

After being told to wait in the Green Room of the Customs House, Mr Einstein came to collect us for the ‘lecture’ he was about to give.

He led us into the theatre-turned-lecture hall in a bid to explain his theory of relativity and exactly what E=mc2 means.

We were transported back to 1930s America as Einstein led us through the story of his life and how we first came up with his theories.

With a little help from audience members – some a little more reluctant that others – he demonstrated relative speed, the speed of light, and how vacuums work.

From behind his podium, prompted by a comically blank piece of paper, he explained everything to the audience clearly and concisely.

Hinton’s interactions with the audience were hilarious. Einstein may be a scientific genius, but Hinton is a comedy one.

He has natural charm and completely embodies the character to the point that everyone got a shock when he spoke in his own voice when the show had ended.

The show also included a number of side-splitting songs which saw Hinton accompanied on piano by Jo Eagle, who portrayed Einstein’s mother and two wives.

The songs were catchy and comical, and performed in a German accent, were simply some of the funniest musical numbers I’ve ever had the pleasure of listening to.

Einstein also took on a rap in the guise of his alter-ego MC Squared.

After donning a cap, Hinton burst into a fast-paced rap that was laced with complicated scientific language. It was utterly impressive and massively hilarious.

After seeing last year’s The Origin of the Species by means of Natural Selection or the Survival of (R)Evolutionary Theories in the face of Scientific and Ecclesiastical Objections: being a Musical Comedy about Charles Darwin (1809-1882), I was already a fan, and now I am more than ever.

Next year, Hinton is set to take on the role of famous chemist Marie Curie. Now that is definitely something I want to see, and I can only hope and pray that Tangram Theatre Company bring it to us.

Twitter: @ShieldsGazVicki