Musicals & opera review: Thor And Loki, Assembly Roxy

The cast of Thor And Loki are experts at multi-tasking. Picture: Geraint Lewis
The cast of Thor And Loki are experts at multi-tasking. Picture: Geraint Lewis
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Wagner’s Ring cycle is fine and all that but if you would rather see an alternative reading of Norse mythology – where the fabled Ragnarok is adapted as a musical theatre romp about equality, diversity and open borders – then Thor and Loki is probably more up your fjord, and somewhat pithier in the telling.

Thor And Loki, Assembly Roxy (Venue 139) ****

We first meet Odin and his offspring on a war footing, togged up in wrestling and American football gear and ready to defend the goddess Freya, who guards the golden apples of immortality, with all the homemade props in their armoury. But their aggressive posturing sits uncomfortably with chosen child Thor, an effete pacifist who writes poetry and celebrates his coming-of-age at 34, when he is gifted the hammer of the gods and a nice glittery bomber jacket.

Meanwhile, his alleged arch-nemesis Loki is a confused teenage goth brought up in a hippy household who tries to join the army to fit in but can’t quite keep up with the camp army recruitment number. When they eventually meet, they unleash the supernatural forces of a twee recorder duet and join forces against the giants to oppose the building of an enchanted wall (topical) and the mistreatment of the ordinary mortals of Midgard.

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Along the way, there is an old-school tap dance routine about pacifism and a belting ballad about Loki’s parentage among other slick-witted set pieces.

Thor and Loki is daft throwaway fun but what elevates this sparkly production to musical theatre Valhalla is the sheer multi-tasking talent of the cast of six who are all mighty singers, fleet-footed dancers, funny actors and multi-instrumentalists (woodwind a speciality), making them all at least a quadruple threat.

• Until 26 August, 7:15pm