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Sep 10th

Good To Firm

By Steve Burbridge

Good to Firm.JPG
Good To Firm

The Customs House, South Shields

Good To Firm is the first play of a trilogy written by Ed Waugh and Trevor Wood. It is centred around the Fletcher’s, Bob and Shirley, and Bob’s childhood sweetheart, Phillippa, who visits them on her annual trip home to see her parents.

Bob (Ray Spencer) is obsessed by horse-racing and enjoys nothing better than studying the form, popping into the bookies and finishing off at the pub. His long-suffering wife, Shirley (Angela Szalay), who has been married to Bob for 27 years, dislikes Phillippa and the relationship she has with her husband. Phillippa, played by Patricia L. Whale, moved to Florida, has a highly-paid job and likes nothing more than living the high-life. She has had many relationships, with both male and female partners, but still holds a torch for Bob, her first love.

Afnan Iftikhar portrays lothario Les, Phillippa’s latest boyfriend. He is quite a womaniser and does not hold back when trying to charm the females around him.

This comedy play is set against the back drop of the Grand National week end and begins as Bob is watching his VHS tape of the race, in which Red Rum beats Crisp, for the umpteenth time. It follows the characters as they spend the week end together and events from their pasts start to unfold.

Directed by Mark Wingett (who is probably best remembered for his 21-year role as DC Jim Carver in the long-running-but-recently-demised drama, The Bill), this production will suit anyone seeking an evening of light comedy entertainment, but be aware that it does contain some strong language and frequent sexual references.

Linda Barker.

Runs until Saturday 11 September 2010.

The second and third productions of the trilogy are as follows:

‘Raising The Stakes’ – Wednesday 6 October to Saturday 9 October 2010.

‘Photo Finish’ – Thursday 28 October to Saturday 6 November 2010.

Sep 8th

The Girl in the Yellow Dress

By Steve Burbridge

Marianne Oldham & Nat Ramabulana in The Girl In The Yellow Dress.JPG

The Girl in the Yellow Dress

Live Theatre, Newcastle upon Tyne

 Fresh from wowing audiences at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival, The Girl in the Yellow Dress is set to take Tyneside audiences by storm at Newcastle’s Live Theatre.

Marianne Oldham, who was nominated for The Stage’s Best Actress Award for her performance in the production, plays Celia, a beautiful young English teacher who has started a new life in Paris. When Celia agrees to take on a French-Congolese pupil called Pierre (played by Nat Ramabulana), a complex relationship develops that starts to unravel dark truths from each of their pasts.

Ostensibly, the play deals with the issues and tensions that surround class, race, language and identity. The allegories and metaphors that are employed to illustrate the idea that nothing in life is either black or white can sometimes seem a little heavy-handed: one performer is black, one is white; educated civilisation is represented by pristine shelves of books bound in white, whereas the black leather-upholstered furniture has connotations of a more carnal nature.

The dialogue is beautifully-written but, because it makes frequent references to linguistic devices, can sometimes seem dense and impenetrable. The emphasis is placed strongly on conveying the theory that words, language and communication can be manipulated to the effect that, often, when a person speaks more is being concealed than actually revealed. Even scene titles are projected onto the bookcases, amongst a jumble of other words, and the audience tries to seek out the hidden information.

However, the performances are earnest and compelling enough to ensure that we become deeply involved with the characters. Although it is apparent that neither of the characters are completely who or what they claim to be, we care about them and are interested in them nonetheless. The sexual frisson between them is evident throughout and further contributes to the overall tension.

Running at ninety minutes, without an interval, there was the odd occasion when I began to shift in my seat. That said, for the most part this sharply-written, perfectly-performed piece kept me enthralled.

Steve Burbridge.

Runs until Saturday 18th September.


Aug 30th

Blood Brothers - The Story So Far . . .

By Steve Burbridge

FORMER  X-Factor semi-finalist and West End leading lady Niki Evans is preparing to don the care-worn smile and cross-over pinny to play the iconic role of Mrs Johnstone in the smash-hit musical Blood Brothers at Darlington Civic Theatre. STEVE BURBRIDGE discovers why so many successful singers and recording artists are only too willing to trade a place at the top of the charts for a life on ‘the never-never’.

AT the beginning of the play, she’s the twenty-something Liverpudlian single mother ‘with seven hungry mouths to feed and one more nearly due,’ but, by the final curtain, she ends up a down-trodden, distraught grandmother who is struggling to comprehend the most tragic of situations.

The pivotal character of Mrs Johnstone in Willy Russell’s musical, Blood Brothers, is anything but a glamorous part, so what is it about the role that attracts pop princesses and singing superstars by the dozen?

Well, the answer is, initially it didn’t.

When Willy Russell approached folk singer Barbara Dickson to play Mrs Johnstone, in 1982, she repeatedly turned him down.

‘I was so riddled with self doubt about whether I could actually do it, never having acted in my life,’ she said. ‘It worried me that I would not be up to doing it.’

After much persuasion and reassurance, she finally accepted his offer and the show opened at Liverpool Playhouse for a three month run in January 1983.

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It was an instant success and transferred to the Lyric Theatre, Shaftesbury Avenue, in April of the same year, where it won an Olivier Award for Best New Musical and Barbara Dickson was named Best Actress in a Musical by The Society of West End Theatres.

Speaking of the role she was so instrumental in creating, Barbara said: ‘Mrs Johnstone is a role which is very dear to my heart and a hard act to follow. I couldn’t accept a role which was less than that and such parts are thin on the ground.’

The impact of the character upon Barbara Dickson was so profound that she has since reprised the role three times – once in the West End, to coincide with its tenth anniversary celebrations, and twice in Liverpool.

After two extensive national tours, Blood Brothers returned to the West End in July 1988. It played to packed houses at the Albery Theatre, where it starred Kiki Dee. Best remembered for ‘Don’t Go Breaking My Heart’, her 1976 hit duet with Elton John, Blood Brothers proved to be a significant event in her career, too.

‘It’s such a strong piece,’ she said. ‘You just have to graft and hope you’re doing a good performance.’

The musical ran at the Albery until the end of 1991 after which it moved to the larger Phoenix Theatre in Charing Cross Road, where it remains to this day.

Having enjoyed such critical and commercial success in the West End, it was only a matter of time before the show transferred to Broadway and it opened at the Music Box Theatre, West 45th Street, in April 1993 and ran for two years.

The late Stephanie Lawrence, who had starred in the West End productions of Evita, Marilyn!, Starlight Express and Blood Brothers was rewarded with a Tony nomination for Best Actress in a Musical and won the Theater World Award for Outstanding Broadway Debut by an Actress for her portrayal of Mrs Johnstone, before returning to continue the role in London.

In an interview given in 1995, five years before her untimely death, she said: ‘I find the role emotionally exhausting. Mrs Johnstone is a character who has had so many knocks that there is not much left you can sling at her. She’s a fighter and a winner.’

Producer Bill Kenwright persuaded singing sensation Petula Clark to take over the role on Broadway, despite the fact that she experienced the same initial misgivings as Barbara Dickson had.

‘I thought it was total madness,’ she said. ‘I did a lot of soul searching before I finally said yes.’

Once settled in the role, and after garnering great acclaim from the New York critics, Petula admitted that she’d made the right decision.

‘The music fits me like a glove, it’s my kind of music. That was the big selling-point, really, for me.’

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Clark led the production during a hugely successful American tour and was succeeded on Broadway by Carole King, the Grammy award-winning singer-songwriter responsible for the 1971 hit single, ‘It’s Too Late.’  Having been invited to watch the show with the proposition of performing the role of Mrs Johnstone, Carole was also unsure about taking on the part. However she’d made up her mind by the interval.

‘After the first act, I said: ‘I’m in.’ I love the show,’ she enthused. ‘The melodies are very comfortable for me to sing because they’re very like the ones I would write.’

For Australian-born Helen Reddy it was the strength of Mrs Johnstone’s character that appealed more than anything else. Echoing the sentiments of her 1972 feminist anthem, ‘I Am Woman’, she said: ‘If I didn’t think that Mrs Johnstone was a strong and invincible woman, I wouldn’t have been interested in playing her.’

However, Helen certainly was interested and went on to play the part on Broadway, in the West End, and also in Liverpool between 1995 and 1997.

At the same time, the UK’s 1971 Eurovision representative, Clodagh Rodgers, who came fourth with her hit song, ‘Jack In A Box’, joined the West End cast before touring the role until 1998.

Although some of the women who are chosen to play Mrs Johnstone agonise over whether they can rise to the challenge of performing such a demanding and emotionally-charged role, others instinctively know it will suit them down to the ground.

Former New Seekers singer, Lyn Paul said: ‘I saw the show and said to my husband then that it was a part I wanted to play.’

She wrote to theatre impresario Bill Kenwright to express her interest and was invited to meet him.

‘He sent me a letter back saying fine, come and see me and I was in the show the following week,’ she recalled. ‘Even though I hadn’t done musicals before, he took the gamble of taking me on.’

Lyn’s association with the role has spanned thirteen years from 1997, during which time she has starred in both West End and touring productions. In December 2008, she was voted ‘The Undisputed Mrs Johnstone of All Time’ by fans of the show on the Blood Brothers Online website.


In October 2009, former Spice Girl Melanie Chisholm took over the role from X-Factor semi-finalist Niki Evans in the West End.  Despite being daunted by the prospect of playing such an iconic role, her six month run earned her great critical acclaim and a nomination for Best Actress in a Musical at the Olivier Awards earlier this year.

‘Playing Mrs Johnstone is quite a weight to have on your shoulders, but I was in such good hands and it really paid off,’ she said.


Perhaps one name is inextricably linked with Mrs Johnstone more than any other – Nolan. During the last thirteen years four of the sisters, Bernie, Linda, Denise and Maureen, have portrayed her, earning them a place in the Guinness Book of Records as the most siblings to have played the same role in the same show at different times.

‘It’s such a brilliant piece and a great part,’ said Bernie. ‘It’s a gift, really, and I thoroughly enjoyed playing her.’

Linda agreed: ‘I was thrilled to be asked and I put everything into it. There’s been so many fabulous Mrs Johnstone’s and I wanted to be as good as them and put my own stamp on the part.’

Prior to taking on the role in 2005, Maureen had seen three of her sisters play Mrs Johnstone.

‘Before I was in it I had seen it 17 times!’ she admitted. ‘I was so enthralled and I thought: ‘If I ever do it I will never short-change anybody.’ I think for a woman of my age it’s the best role, really. It’s got everything – comedy, tragedy and music.’

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When, in September 2008, Linda Nolan had to withdraw from the Blood Brothers tour due to illness, Marti Webb took over after a 24-hour decision. Webb was already an accomplished musical theatre actress and had achieved chart success with three top five singles in the 1980s.

‘It was literally decided in one day,’ she said. ‘I was like a rabbit in the headlights because I had to learn the songs and the script in twenty-four hours, but Mrs Johnstone is such an important role and I had a ball playing her.’

Now, though, Niki Evans is reprising the role once more and she is as enthusiastic about playing the part as she was when she first performed in the West End in 2008.

‘It’s just an unbelievable part,’ she explained. ‘I still have to pinch myself every night when I’m on stage to remind myself that I’m really there.’

Such is the dramatic power and cultural impact of Blood Brothers that, already the next generation of Mrs Johnstone’s are waiting in the wings.

Former Steps singer Faye Tozer is one of many who have publicly expressed an ambition to take on the role.

‘I’ve always wanted to play Mrs Johnstone,’ she said. ‘I’m probably still a little bit young for it, but I’d love to do it.’

And who’s to say that some time in the not too distant future she won’t be up there giving it her all?

Blood Brothers is at Darlington Civic Theatre from September 20 to September 25. Tickets cost from £18.00 to £31.00 (concessions available). To book, call 01325 486 555 or log on to 












Aug 3rd

Canoeing for Beginners

By Steve Burbridge

Canoeing For Beginners.JPG
Canoeing for Beginners

The Customs House, South Shields

Award-winning playwright Mike Yeaman has taken the essence of a factual story and transformed it into an engrossing and entertaining theatre production. The story of a certain Hartlepool woman whose husband disappeared one day only to reappear eight years later forms the basis of Canoeing for Beginners.

Although, upon first consideration, such a topic may seem strange material to be chosen as the subject of a play that is, predominantly, a comedy-drama, Yeaman has the courage and talent to do just that.

Having assembled a cast that includes Pat Dunn, David Whitaker, Chris Connel, Laura Norton and Gary Kitching, the production, on paper, promised to be a landmark event in regional and, indeed, national theatre. However, in practice, several factors prevented it from achieving its full potential.

Helen Ferguson’s direction resulted in several shortcomings. It seemed blatantly apparent that the cast were under-rehearsed and, as a consequence, several actors did not perform comfortably in their roles. Pat Dunn, as Beryl, and David Whitaker, as Frank, should have been confident leading players but neither conveyed the required self-belief and conviction to do so. Chris Connel seriously over-egged the pudding in his portrayal as Sgt Watts, but should be congratulated for his ability to perform two roles in very quick succession on a number of occasions. Gary Kitching and Laura Norton, as Frank and Beryl’s adult children, both performed well, but lacked the guidance of a firm directorial hand.

Running at nearly two and a half hours, the piece seemed long at times and there was at least one scene that could easily have been cut without detracting from the plot.

On the plus side, the show contains some wonderful one-liners which provoked more than a few belly-laughs from the audience. The main strength of this production lies with Mike Yeaman’s script and, providing that certain tweaks and adjustments are made, I envisage no reason why it should not have a long and successful future ahead of it. Indeed, Canoeing for Beginners is a generic hybrid that skilfully blends comedy with drama and fact with fiction, resulting in a piece that bears all the hallmarks of a sure-fire hit.

Steve Burbridge.

Runs until Saturday 7th August 2010.




Jul 21st

Inside Job

By Steve Burbridge

Christopher Villiers, Michelle Morris & Matt Healy.jpg
Inside Job

Darlington Civic Theatre

Brian Clemens, perhaps best known as the creator of cult classic The Avengers, Bergerac, The Professionals and Bugs, is the author responsible for penning this latest thriller to be presented by theatre impresario Ian Dickens.

Set on the Costa Del Crime, in a remote Spanish villa a mile or so outside Marbella, the plot revolves around the ludicrously named Dutch Holland (Matt Healy). Enjoying a hedonistic life in the sun, under the alias of ‘Larry’, he encounters the stunning Suzy (Michelle Morris), a femme-fatale who makes him an offer he finds impossible to refuse . . . until he later meets her violent, alcoholic husband Alex (Christopher Villiers), who presents an even more tempting proposition.

Ostensibly, Inside Job is a typical stage thriller, complete with dodgy deals, despicable double-crosses and double-bluffs aplenty. What could have been a tense and taught three-hander degenerated somewhat into something of a comedy due, for the most part to some rather stagey over-acting.

Matt Healy’s crook, on the run from Interpol, started off charismatically enough but his tendency to over-exaggerate every gesture, movement and facial expression resulted in his character becoming more of a caricature.

Christopher Villiers’s portrayal of Alex made the character seem as camp as a row of fluorescent pink tents, whilst Michelle Morris, as Suzy, failed to compellingly convince as a woman who is the lust object of many a male desire.

The true star of this production was the set. The Mediterranean converted farmhouse, with its conservatory-style furniture and focal-point chimney breast, evoked a real sense of place. Although the programme notes do not credit a specific ‘set designer’, I can only make an educated guess that it is ‘technical director’ David North who should be applauded.

On the whole, the production is an enjoyable affair that could be transformed into something far more special if the director, Giles Watling, instructed his actors to bring their performances down a little. Nevertheless, Inside Job will undoubtedly appeal to all those theatre-going amateur sleuths out there.

Runs until Saturday 24th July 2010.

Jun 22nd

Columbo: Prescription Murder

By Steve Burbridge

Columbo – Prescription: Murder

Darlington Civic Theatre

The dishevelled Lieutenant Columbo is an iconic figure in the world of the television detective genre, and Peter Falk’s portrayal of the character between 1968 and 2003 ensured that the hit series achieved cult status. Now, the case that launched the legend, ‘Prescription: Murder’, has been returned to the stage with Middle Ground Theatre Company’s production.

Former star of television series ‘The A Team’, Dirk Benedict takes on the title role and has the unenviable task of walking in the shadow of the legendary Peter Falk. Although the character of Columbo does not appear on stage until a fair way into the plot, when Benedict made his entrance it was to warm applause from the audience.

In addition to his visual impressiveness, Benedict also had every mannerism and nuance of the character honed to a tee and his performance was consistently excellent. Patrick Ryecart, as the murderous Dr Flemming, performed his role with a strength and assuredness which ensured that he was in no way overshadowed by the dogged detective.

The supporting cast – Karen Drury (Claire Flemming), Elizabeth Lowe (Susan Hudson), George Telfer (Dave Gordon) and Karren Winchester (Miss Petrie) all give top-notch performances, too.

Michael Lunney’s direction keeps up the momentum and, although the identity of the murderer is no mystery (in true ‘Columbo’ style), the suspense is maintained in the taut game of cat-and-mouse played between Dr Flemming and Lt. Columbo.

John Goodwin and Andy Martin are to be commended for the design of the effective set and the backstage crew must be congratulated for some of the slickest scene changes I have ever seen at a theatre. Similarly, the lighting design, by Bob Hodges, adds an additional element of atmosphere to the proceedings.

Indeed, ‘Columbo: Prescription Murder’ is a first-class production that, at times, drew audible gasps of shock and surprise from the audience. As Dr Flemming observed: ‘You are magnificent, Columbo!’

Steve Burbridge.

Jun 20th

Todd Gordon and Tina May Sing Frank and Ella

By Steve Burbridge



There’s something about the sound of jazz and swing that makes my spine tingle – I love it! Add the smooth, silky quality of Todd Gordon’s crooning, the dulcet tones of the sultry, sophisticated, sassy Tina May and the hit recordings made famous by Frank Sinatra and Ella Fitzgerald and, in my opinion, you’re in for a pretty spectacular evening.

On Saturday night, Darlington Arts Centre played host to Mr Gordon and Miss May in their tribute to Ol’ Blue Eyes and the First Lady of Song. After Todd Gordon opened up with a set that included You Make Me Feel So Young, S’Wonderful, Hard Hearted Hannah and The Summer Wind, Tina May stepped into the limelight and wowed the audience with her renditions of A-Tisket, A-Tasket, Night and Day, Black Coffee and Someone To Watch Over Me. The duet numbers, Manhattan and They Can’t Take That Away From Me demonstrated that these performers go together as well as champagne and caviar.

In a corner of my mind, I was transported back in time to an old ‘speakeasy’ in Prohibition-era New York. Perhaps I was born in the wrong place and time?

The evening continued with many more classic standards from the American songbook, including I Get A Kick Out Of You, It Was A Very Good Year and How Long Has This Been Going On? The vocalists were accompanied by a truly talented trio of musicians in the form of Gordon Kilroy (percussion), Brian Shiels (bass) and David Patrick (piano).

The evening was rounded off with a playful and quirky duet of The Lady is a Tramp and, after two delightful hours of wonderful musical entertainment the audience, and this reviewer, left the theatre and entered into the warm, dusky night air humming those fabulous tunes.

Steve Burbridge.

Jun 15th

Mum's The Word

By Steve Burbridge

Mums The Word - 3.JPG
Mum’s The Word

Darlington Civic Theatre

Essentially, Mum’s The Word is really rather similar to The Vagina Monologues but instead of three women perched on stools talking about , erm – well, you know, vagina’s – you get five seated women talking, at great length, about motherhood and sprogs.

Gillian Taylforth leads the cast, stepping in as a last minute replacement for Bernie Nolan who had to withdraw from the tour due to illness, and she does an admirable job. Her warm, gravelly voice is well-suited to the role of straight-talking mum, Robin. She is joined on stage by two other former soap actresses, Tracy Shaw (Coronation Street’s Maxine Peacock) as Jill and Sally Ann Matthews (Coronation Street’s Jenny Bradley) as Alison. Mandy Holliday and Susie Fenwick complete the line-up, although on press evening at Darlington Miss Fenwick was indisposed and understudy Kaye Quinley performed the role of Deborah.

Initially, I have to say, the production left me feeling rather underwhelmed and rather bored. And before anybody jumps to the conclusion that, because I’m a guy, I wouldn’t ‘get’ the show, let me set the record straight. During my time as a reviewer, I have seen productions including The Vagina Monologues, Menopause: The Musical, Hot Flush! and Women on the Verge of HRT and ‘got’ at least three of them totally.

However, I have to say that my personal tolerance of endless monologues on dirty nappies, snot, urine, faeces and vomit isn’t particularly high. Sure, I guess if you’ve experienced motherhood, you’ve experienced your fair share of all the aforementioned, but what about those in the audience who have not? The main difference between Mum’s The Word and the other female-orientated productions is that it excludes those who are not mothers, whereas the others don’t.

The first act was a rather lack-lustre affair for me, although I don’t attribute the blame for this to the actresses nor the director, Andrew Lynford. In my opinion, the script is to blame and I suspect that having been written by six women, it has suffered from too many cooks spoiling the broth.

The second act was considerably better, though, and there were some genuinely funny moments, particularly during parodies of The Weakest Link, during which Kaye Quinley gives an eerily accurate impersonation of Anne Robinson, and Puppetry of the Penis, in which Mandy Holliday interacts with a pink sock penis puppet.

Although Mum’s The Word is by no means a slick, stylish and successful comedy in my opinion, I must point out – in the interests of fairness and  balance – that it has attracted some great actresses in its eight-year history, including Blythe Duff (Taggart), Jenny Eclair (Grumpy Old Women), Patsy Palmer (EastEnders), Kim Hartman (Allo, Allo) and Maureen Nolan (Blood Brothers), and that the largely-female audience seemed to enjoy the show immensely and cackled in delight and recognition.

Steve Burbridge.

Runs until Saturday 19th June 2010.

Jun 11th

Elkie Brooks - 50th Anniversary Tour

By Steve Burbridge

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Some performers stand in a league all of their own – and Elkie Brooks is one of them. Now celebrating half a century in the music business, she wowed a heaving Civic theatre as she belted out hits from her back catalogue, including Fool if You Think It’s Over, Sunshine After the Rain, Don’t Cry Out Loud, Lilac Wine and Pearl’s a Singer.

At 65, Elkie looks and, more importantly, sounds fantastic. Her versatility is stunning and she moved with ease from blues to rock to jazz and back again, electrifying the audience as she did so. Indeed, Miss Brooks doesn’t simply deliver a song she makes love to it, caressing the lyrics and sensuously teasing out raw emotion from every line.

Never an artist to just bask in the glory of her past successes, Elkie also introduced the audience to a couple of songs from her brand new album. The hauntingly beautiful Why and the title track, Powerless, are not just two exceptionally brilliant ballads, but also proof that Elkie Brooks just keeps getting better and better and testament that she still has one of the best voices in the business.

 Steve Burbridge.

Jun 3rd

Fawlty Towers

By Steve Burbridge

Fawlty Towers

Whitley Bay Theatre Company at The Playhouse, Whitley Bay

Whitley Bay Theatre Company have lovingly brought back to the stage one of the most classic situation-comedies of all-time, Fawlty Towers. Yes, that’s right, prepare to reacquaint yourselves with Basil, Sybil, Polly and Manuel once again as they invite you to be their guest at the infamous Torquay hotel.

Four memorable episodes – two from the first series and two from the second – comprise the evening’s entertainment: The Builders, Communication Problems, The Hotel Inspectors and Basil the Rat.

Jason Fenn and Joanna Wingate reprise their roles as Basil and Sybil Fawlty, respectively, having played the characters in previous productions at the Playhouse, and they are supported by a cast of twenty-two. The standards demonstrated within this production are outstanding and no detail has been overlooked.

The impressive set, designed by Robin Herron, makes extremely clever use of the stage space and is dressed with an acute eye for detail by Karen Knox. Filmed inserts are utilised effectively to depict exterior scenes, whilst also facilitating the necessary scene changes.

However, the most impressive aspect of the show is, without doubt the performances of the cast. Jason Fenn’s portrayal of Basil is a magnificent example of physical comedy and his characterisation is eerily accurate, resulting in a performance that is an absolute tour-de-force. Similarly, Joanna Wingate brilliantly brings to life Basil’s ‘toxic midget’, Sybil, complete with the catchprase, ‘Oooh, I knooow’, and braying laugh. Special mention must also be made of Danny Patterson who gave a fantastically comedic performance as Manuel, despite taking over the role at very short notice.

Aside from the principals, a number of supporting characters managed to steal entire scenes. Elizabeth Purcell, as the intermittently deaf Mrs Richards, and Diane Legg as Mrs Carnegie, the public health inspector, were two notable examples.

Congratulations, though, must be extended to each and every cast member (as well as the production team) for delivering a side-splitting show that was rapturously received from the audience. Make your reservations now and enjoy your stay!

Steve Burbridge.

Runs until Saturday 5th June 2010.