MKEC productions regularly produce work at the Drayton Arms theatre, and have previously produced fantastic pieces such as this years 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee which received excellent reviews across the board. Unfortunately, Baby is not MKEC’s finest hour. Or, two and a half long hours.
A rom com at heart, there is no doubt that this piece has a huge amount of potential. Potential to be far funnier, potential to modernise and potential to really delve into some of the strands of narrative, but unfortunately it misses most of these opportunities. Aside from a couple of up to the minute, relevant quips on what it is to carry a baby, the narrative around pregnancy and baby loss is boring at best; unhelpful at worst.
The cast are strong individually but their voices don’t make for easy listening together and in such a small space, the size of which also creates a problem for the choreographed line dancing, which would probably be better omitted. That said, it is wonderful to see a production featuring an older couple, a rarity in fringe theatre and in the West End where only those with a name for themselves seem to feature.
We can only hope that MKEC’s next ventures returns to the standard of their previous work and avoid the clichés which abound here.