A new play by The Revellers’ dynamic duo, Clive and Sue Read, is something eagerly anticipated by their many supporters.
Whilst other Peterborough amateur dramatic societies have, mainly, chosen box office certainties or classic plays performed at the Key, local village halls or other obvious venues, the Revellers have forged their own path of new, mostly comic material served in a supper club setting at the Burton Street Indoor Bowls’ Club or other intimate spaces.
The result is most often an entertaining and popular piece presented by enthusiastic and often extremely adept actors with not only helpings of delicious fish and chips for the audience but more than generous portions of technical expertise and theatrical brio too.
Last week’s offering of ‘B & B USA’ was no exception. Based loosely on Clive and Sue’s own experience of a holiday at their daughter’s small hotel on Route 66 in Arizona and directed impressively by new recruit to the oversight of plays, Helen Naylor assisted by Sarah Middleton, this farcical comedy in the Ray Cooney mode amused the capacity audience from the first bark of the unseen dog, Caesar, who provided a bowlful of laughs in a consistently funny evening.
Acting performances were uniformly good and despite a few line fluffs, the action was relentless and the comedy of miscommunication, caused by ‘two countries separated by a common language’ as George Bernard Shaw once said, carried us to a satisfying conclusion.
In an evening of excellent acting, the stand out performance of an amusing evening for me was Cydney Beagley’s star turn as Carmen the Mexican ‘help.’ With a flawless accent and an ability to turn the slightest line into an hilarious stand-up routine, Cydney’s encyclopaedic library of looks and double takes proved her to be a supreme comic actress in the Sheriden Smith class.
All in all, Clive and Sue Read’s latest play was given a brilliant airing and for an hour or so, we were transported from Peterborough to the stifling desert air of Arizona. At the end of the road, all is well and hearts are found to be in the right place with Jean and Barry the hotel owners returning from red rocked Arizona to the more bracing Skegness … or even Worthing.
I look forward to the Revellers’ next new play in June: ‘Who Me?’
Review by Sandra Samwell.