Exposing the humor in heartbreak and falling in love, ‘Never Date A Songwriter‘ is an evening well spent.
Avoiding the cliché, Shanon Whitelock managed to find and share the obscure moments of dating and relationships that we all seem to experience through song. Whether it’s being bored on a date, getting to know a stranger in a café, or experiencing a nose-bleed while making out, ‘Never Date A Songwriter’ was humourously blunt and managed to share candid stories without over-romanticising romance.
As a work that openly explores gay relationships and dating, ‘Never Date A Songwriter’ has the power to share the lesser-told story of same-sex love. The show’s quirky lyrics and stories perfectly prove that love between two people is merely love between two people — and that gayness or straightness doesn’t impact the way humans love. As a person whose gay uncle has been happily married for years, I especially appreciated the song dedicated to explaining a new boyfriend to a young niece.
While many of the tunes were upbeat and noticeably influenced by a blend of musical theatre and singer/songwriter style, Whitelock’s song about being on tour allowed for a moment of seriousness, proving his ability to captivate in melancholy moments as well as humourous ones. His use of dissonance to end this piece was effective in highlighting the uncertainty of a life on the road.
Using witty lyrics, inviting the audience to sing along, and poking fun at dating different artistic-types, Whitelock crafted a funny and engaging show. While I often find myself making a conscious effort to focus on a song’s lyrics, I easily caught every word of each number as I was careful not to miss the next ridiculous line.
Navigating love with a rich voice that shimmers in both the falsetto and lower registers, Shanon Whitelock’s ‘Never Date A Songwriter’ had me laughing out loud and smiling at the oddities of life.
Hannah Rundman, originally from Michigan, USA, is an arts manager and lover of art that breaks the mold of established mediums. She values eye contact and art that brings diverse groups of people together.
Never Date A Songwriter runs 13-18 October at the Butterfly Club.
The venue is not accessible.