A re­turn of good-old stage farce

Hinckley Times - - THE GUIDE -

BACK in the day, good old slap­stick farce was a fairly sta­ple diet both on our TV screens and on stage.

Shows such Some Mother’s Do ‘Ave ‘Em and Last of the Sum­mer Wine dom­i­nated the screens and on stage you could en­joy farces in­clud­ing Ray Cooney’s in­clud­ing Run For Your Wife and Out of Or­der.

Nor­mally the plays in­volve a po­lice­man, a young lady who ends up in her un­der­wear, a posh gen­tle­man, a but­ler. and a gard­ner. And it is usu­ally set in a coun­try house or ho­tel some­where.

The story of­ten re­volves around a dead body and an af­fair or three and sev­eral big mis­un­der­stand­ings.

Throw in some slap­stick stage com­edy and the crowds loved it.

But in re­cent years the genre has been in de­cline.

How­ever, in 2012 a group of strug­gling young ac­tors came up with the idea for an old-fash­ioned style farce which they started per­form­ing above a pub in Lon­don.

It was called The Play That Goes Wrong. And, they and the play have not looked back since. So much so, the ac­tors have since writ­ten an­other.

Their first show has since gone on to win awards and even reached Broad­way.

Last week it ar­rived at the Curve the­atre in Le­ices­ter.

The story is a play within a play. The very am­a­teur Corn­ley Polytech­nic Drama So­ci­ety have de­cided to stage a new show called The Mur­der at Haver­sham Manor which has sim­i­lar­i­ties with The Mouse­trap.

The play they per­form is set in the 1920s and has a po­lice­man, but­ler, posh gen­tle­man, a woman that ends up in her un­der­wear, a gar­dener and a dead body. It also has dis­as­ter writ­ten all over it from the very start.

The strug­gling so­ci­ety has tried to put to­gether a stage set but it does keep on fall­ing to bits as the ac­tors try and carry on as best they can while hold­ing up the door and var­i­ous or­na­ments that have fallen.

This is a very slick and clever play which keeps the au­di­ence en­ter­tained even be­fore it be­gins as the act­ing starts well be­fore the au­di­to­rium is full.

The badly-de­signed set is in many ways the star of the show as it is the prop that keeps the play go­ing and al­lows the ac­tors to show off their skills.

It must be dif­fi­cult to deil­ver lines while try­ing to carry out some of the stunts.

This is a su­perb show and one that de­serves its ac­co­lades, the au­di­ence re­ac­tion at the end was as pos­i­tive as the Curve has seen.

The group’s sec­ond show A Com­edy About a Bank Rob­bery is com­ing to the Curve next year so make sure you book your tick­ets.

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