Tuesday, August 23, 2011

" Farcical Frolickings By The Lake..."

Yes, it's corny....Farce IS corny...all that stripping off... the running in and out of open and closed doors....silly phone calls....the constant losing of trousers....people tumbling downstairs....people falling over...people falling in love....all those ridiculous predictable mix-ups!

On Friday we saw Michael Frayn's " Noises Off!" at Theatre By The Lake, Keswick, Cumbria ( see http://www.theatrebythelake.co.uk/ ) It's a gorgeous spot for a theatre, set in the heart of the Lakes... by Derwentwater ...and we've had many visits now over several years.

AND T.B.T.L really is the most laidback of places. To quote my friend, some folk look as though they're straight off the fells ( meant as a compliment!) and others dress in their own elegant Best. In fact, you could say Everyone comes as Themself. And that suits the ambience of this place. And as you arrive, you're made welcome and you're all set for a happy evening.....

BUT I didn't know what to expect from this play. AND by expressions on other folk's faces as the curtain rose, I reckon others felt the same.
BECAUSE Farce is predicable....it's wellworn....its jokes can be yawnable....and I think we were wondering........BUT altho all 3 Acts were packed with Classic ("what-you-expect Farce").... we laughed.....and we laughed..and we laughed.... because this was actually CLASSY Farce......with a clever script based on a play-within-a-play ( OR rather a " farce-within-a-farce) .......AND the 2nd Act "sort-of" brilliantly repeated the 1st.....( anymore info would be telling)..........And there was an amazing set ( built by Topshow Scenic Construction: both front/back of a stage set).... and there were fine characatures, including Ben Ingles ( clearly a dancer in another life) as Gary Lejeune ( I couldn't help thinking of PM Cameron as he strode about in immaculate suit !?) ....ALSO Heather Saunders as seductively dippy Brooke Ashton, did much to steal the show...The play was slightly too long...but that's only a tiny criticism..

SO: If you're in northern parts, "Noises Off!" plays until November, along with 5 other plays in rotation, using same company of actors.
****And talking of other Happenings: Michael Frayne's writer wife, Claire Tomalin, comes to Chester LitFest on October 19th to talk about her latest book: " Charles Dickens: A Life". See http://www.chesterfestivals.co.uk/ for full details....
AND P.S: Michael Frayn's novel " Spies" is one of the best books I've read in recent years. And when my brother borrowed my copy, he started it one evening and couldn't put it down. He finally finished in the Early Hours.

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Blogger Gill - That British Woman said...

we're from that neck of the woods, well sort of, originally. Appleby in Cumbria is where I grew up, been to Keswick a lot over the years though.

Gill in Canada

12:24 pm  
Blogger Debs Carr said...

I went there a few years ago and it's certainly lovely.

Glad you had a good time watching the play.

5:11 pm  
Blogger cheshire wife said...

The Lake District is on our list of places to visit.

6:14 pm  
Blogger Jan said...

What a lovely part of the world, Gill!

Yes, but often wet!
But that's why it's all so lush...

Cheshire Wife:
You must go!
No distance at all and you'll be seeing one of te best bits of The North!

8:54 pm  
Blogger herhimnbryn said...

Have just read 'Spies' too. Wonderful stuff.

12:32 am  

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