Review by Olivia Ruggiero
“I’ll Tell You Mine” is an acapella music show presented by the Oxford Belles at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe Festival. It is a musical exploration of songs made famous by women with recognisable hits from Beyoncé, Whitney Houston, Britney Spears and many more.
There are some fantastic acapella arrangements and mashups of these well-known hits and the show certainly brings many fantastic elements of female empowerment. There are some phenomenal voices amongst the group with standout soloists popping out of the ensemble for brief moments. The ladies certainly gave their all to the performance bringing awesome energy to a lot of the numbers and really hitting the choreography which was quite well assembled and rehearsed.
The only downfall of this show was there were times when the harmonies were not quite in tune, which in an acapella choir is absolutely essential. The opening number was energised, and the choreography was quite intense which resulted in breathlessness causing some pitch issues amongst the group. Perhaps there were some nerves at play too because a few numbers into the show these ladies settled quite well into most of their harmonies and the breath control was exponentially better – even in some of the high energy routines.
There were some issues with blending too which may have contributed to the dissonance in sound. Most of these ladies were excellent soloists however this can lead an incohesive ensemble when everyone is wanting to be the star and therefore not focused entirely on blending in the ensemble moments.
There were some interesting costume choices with the everyone wearing their own choice of black clothing. Pops of colour were added with eyeshadow and some accessories. Some ladies had really obvious colour choices with green scrunchies, necklaces and eyeshadows, or pink earrings and bracelets. There were some that appeared to have no colour at all, and it didn’t seem there was a rhyme or reason to the colour scheme that added to the meaning of the show. This often times looked messy and perhaps didn’t have the desired effect the group was going for.
The lighting design for the show was simple but fabulous – brilliant moods were creating with the lighting and added to the atmosphere of each song. The sound scape is also brilliantly done. Each girl uses a microphone and the effects added to reflect the atmosphere of each song are really clever.
This show is very much an homage to Pitch Perfect so if you’re after some girl power at the Edinburgh Fringe and enjoy a good female power anthem then this is the show for you!