Rivercity the musical at the Edmonton Fringe Festival

Rivercity the musical. Photo credit: BB Photography.

Rivercity the musical. Photo credit: BB Photography.

Rivercity the musical by Rebecca Merkley
August 18 – 20, 22- 27 at Venue #36: La Cite Francophone

An interview with Rebecca Merkley.

Describe your show in one sentence.


Okay, now that we’re intrigued… what’s the longer description of your show?

It`s the last day of school of Highschool at Edmonton`s own “Rivercity High.” Andrew’s” (Archie) and his friends have to make some big decisions before they step out into the real world. Full of silly gags and catchy songs.

Your show The Unsyncables at last year’s Fringe was your writing debut. What made you want to branch out into musical theatre for your second show?

I have always been a songwriter but haven’t had a lot of opportunities to share my work. I thought it would be a nice showcase plus a fun and rewarding challenge. It was simply one of those “I should write a musical” moments. So, I wrote a musical.

What was it about the Archie Comics that inspired this show?

I grew up reading Archie Comics and thought it’d be funny to bring these characters to life. I was always drawn to their language (i.e ‘Egads’) and campy, often bad jokes.

How closely did you want Rivercity the musical to reflect the comics versus using them as the base from which to bring a new story to life?

Good question. I spoofed certain characteristics and stayed true to familiar themes. I did, however, take liberties and created a story within’ their “cartoony” world. I felt it was better to use these characters as a catalyst to tell a new story, versus staging vignettes from the digest.

Anything else you want audiences to know about the show?

It’s incredibly silly, sweet and has catchy tunes. The show is carried by 4 actors who play a number of characters. It’s definitely a fun piece of theatre to watch and, we are in an air-conditioned venue.

The 36th Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival is August 17 – 27. Get your tickets at tickets.fringetheatre.ca starting August 9.

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