Tugan’s not so Fawlty take on bedroom farce
SHE’D never heard of it before, but director Margaret Radcliffe says she laughed the whole way through the script for English farce Bedroom Suite when she read it.
‘‘It was not one I’d ever heard of or seen before and I don’t even know if it’s ever been on the Coast,’’ she says.
Radcliffe raises the curtain on her Tugun Theatre Company season of the comedy at Tugun Village Community Centre tonight.
‘‘It was written in the ’80s around the same time internet dating was starting up. We’ve updated it to make it modern and relevant. It’s set in the current era,’’ she says.
‘‘We’re just laughing through every rehearsal and think it will be a hoot with audiences.’’
The comedy centres on internet dating and the funny things that can happen when people’s identities are mistaken.
The story unfolds in 10 identical hotel rooms, with mix-ups and confusion driving the plot.
‘‘Kate has arranged to meet someone online, doesn’t have a photo of him, so is setting the scene for the trail mix-ups,’’ Radcliffe says.
‘‘Her character is youngish, innocent and shy; she likes cats and long walks and is going to give internet dating a try.
‘‘She is played by Candice Dittman, who is new to Tugun Theatre and has brought a great new energy to the stage.
‘‘Tony the Italian waiter is like Manuel from Fawlty Towers on speed,’’ Radcliffe says.
‘‘He’s played by Mark Fell and he totally believes the mayhem. It’s very funny.
‘‘The Italian accent has been a challenge and another character, Dick, also has to soundly tell off Tony on the phone in Italian, which is hilarious as well.’’ Dick is Kate’s date and just like Kate, he’s scared. ‘‘He’s a psychiatrist and is very good with patients but not so good in his own personal relationships,’’ Radcliffe says.
Dick is played by Graeme Stuckings, and is well remembered for his portrayal of the drunken vet in Tea for Two and as the out-there woodsman in A Bad Year For Tomatoes. Tony then brings in Bob, the civil servant who’s a stuffy boring chap, played by Darren Campbell.
‘‘Bob pretends to be Dick because he fancies Kate and Dick is in the adjoining suite and has a date with a call-girl who never comes,’’ Radcliffe says.
‘‘And then there’s Liz played by Tracey Carroll who has been away from the theatre since 2004. ‘‘This is like a welcome back to the stage for her.’’ Radcliffe’s says the play is appropriate for audiences of all ages, with a witty script and loads of action.
Bedroom Suite plays Tugun Village Community Centre Thursdays to Saturdays at 7.30pm from tonight until August 31, with 2pm matinees on Saturday and August 24. Tickets $12 to $15.
Un Natural Selection The Arts Centre Gold Coast: Awkward Productions presents this black, black comedy from Stewart McMillan, the creator of Beautifully Dead. One of four featured theatre works as part of the venue’s inaugural 2013 Independent Season, Un Natural Selection will make you laugh, cry and question your morals. Plays The Space Thursdays to Saturdays from tonight until August 24. Tickets $32 adults, $17.50 students and $28 concessions. Call 5588 4000 to book.
Birthday Suite, Tugun Village Community Centre: Tugun Theatre Company presents this rollicking English farce, directed by Margaret Radcliffe. (Report, Page 7.) Opens tonight and plays Thursdays to Saturdays at 7.30pm until August 31, with 2pm matinees on Saturday and August 24. Tickets $12-$15 concessions. Call 5522 4740 to book.
Whistle Down the Wind, Tweed Heads Civic and Cultural Centre: Neptune Productions presents this rarely performed work, written by Patricia Knop, Gale Edwards and Andrew Lloyd Webber and featuring music by Lloyd Webber and lyrics by Jim Steinman, with orchestrations by David Cullen and Lloyd Webber. Directed by Andy Fahey, with musical direction by Wendy Fahey, choreography by Tammy Dundon and featuring the Voice Weavers Choir under the direction of Brett Logan. Opens tomorrow and plays Fridays at 7.30pm and Saturdays and Sundays at 1.30pm and 7.30pm until August 24. Tickets $15-$25. Phone 5524 9794 or visit neptuneprods.com to book.
Hair, Spotlight Theatre, Benowa: The American tribal love rock musical, featuring lyrics by Gerome Ragni and James Rado and music by Galt Macdermot, was originally produced by the New York Festival Theatre and for the Broadway stage by Michael Butler. Spotlight’s staging is directed by Kim Reynolds. Plays Thursdays to Saturdays at 7.30pm until August 24, with a 2pm matinee on Sunday. Call 5539 4255 to book.
Twelve Angry Men, Phoenix Ensemble, Pavilion Theatre, Beenleigh Showgrounds: Last days! Heather Scott directs this award-winning drama that charts the heated debate and personality battles in a jury room, where a young man’s life hangs in the balance. The production follows the original casting of an all-male jury. Plays tomorrow and Saturday at 7.30pm. Tickets $24 adults, $22 concessions and $20 children. Phone 3103 1546 or visit phoenixensemble.com.au to book.
Sin & Tonic, Dracula’s, Broadbeach: The famed cabaret restaurant’s new variety show melds Berlin burlesque, mischievous comedy, carnival novelty acts and a punchy songlist. Show for 18+ audiences. Stars Rudi Testa, Danielle Casson, Richard Macionis, Megan Barry-Cotter and a live band. Dinner/show plays Tuesdays to Saturdays with arrivals from 6.30pm.
Spirit of the Horse, Australian Outback Spectacular, Oxenford: A dinner and show with a cast of larger-than-life characters, incredible stunts, special effects, live music and a three-course meal. Plays Tuesdays to Saturdays with matinees on the last Sunday of month. Doors open 6.15pm. Tickets from $79.99.
Mark Fell as Tony the Italian waiter in Bedroom Suite
Graeme Stuckings, as Dick, and Tracey Carroll, as Liz, in Bedroom Suite.