The Fylde Coast Players
If you like your comedy ‘traditional’ ……………….or in today’s terms non – PC (Politically Correct) Then this is for you.
The script is literally steeped with innuendos and the second act turns into a ‘bed hopping farce’
You have to remember Are You Being Served was written & set in the 1970’s and reflects the world at the time.
Fantastic inspired casting with stand out performances by Mandy Hall (as Mrs Slowcombe) with a blend of tragi-comical lonely woman and indignant professional sales advisor, she delivered some great put downs. Kudos to Costumes for various flamboyant wigs, glasses, outfits. Also Andy Cooke (as Mr Humpries) who was camper than Christmas in Disneyland and a pink trouser suit to prove it and a special mention to Chris Slack who played irreverent cockney Store Porter – Mash in Act 1 and stereotypical Spanish Hotel Owner Don Bernardo in Act 2.
They all arrive for work with their suitcases as Grace Brothers shuts for refurbishment and so is treating (senior) staff to a Spanish Holiday. Felicity Morgan (as Miss Brahms) was the right mix of slightly ‘thick’ cockney lass, Kieran O’Doherty (Mr Lucas) a cheeky chappy with too much testosterone and off the cuff comments, Glyn Morton (Mr Grainger) bumbling & grumpy, and uncannily like the original TV actor, Don Green (as Captain Peacock) played it haughty & officious as was meant to be, and finally Ian Grant (Mr Rumbold) as the oily Floor Manager.
Supporting cast members,
Ann Slack as a disgruntled customer in Act 1 & in skimpy clothing as Conchita (only jealous of her figure) in Act 2
Jeff Redfern as a cuddly and not scary at all Spanish Revolutionary Cesar
Kath Greenwood, as Matron in Act 1 and (possibly unintentionally) hilarious as one of Cesar’s Army in Act 2
Blink-and-you’d-miss-them Ian Edmundson and Emily Carmell rounded off the remainder of the cast.
Act 1 set in the store, just as I remembered from sat in front of, probably a titchy black & white tv at home. Great stage set with dodgy elevator doors which got (unintentional) laughs and some classic comedy moments, especially involving joke false teeth. With the delivery of the German clothing, there was a gratuitous use of leder hosen and a dance, however it was funny never the less.
Act 2 The employees arrive in Spain to find no rooms at the Hotel for the night, so an alternative is found, add in an errant note passing scene resulting in a bed hopping farce, some creepy crawlies, a toilet with no lock, some surprising local delicacies, exotic nightwear (particularly Mr Humpries) a Revolution taking place, gunfire and Patriotic Knickers.
All pulled together excellently by Paul Lomax the Director, who forte does seem to be comedy, and nothing would be possible without all the Stage, Costume & Set support, indeed all the extended support team.
Always amazed at just how good Am Dram performances are, and the FCP must have really studied their characters as most of the comic timing and even facial expressions were so on par to the original tv cast.
Performances on Thursday 6th July to Saturday 8th at 7.30 pm
More about the Fylde Coast Players HERE