The Play That Goes Wrong – UK Tour
The ridiculously funny and extremely absurd production of The Play That Goes Wrong, has arrived at the Liverpool Empire Theatre!
This fast paced, nonstop show directed by Chris Bean, tells the story of Cornley Polytechnic Drama Society, who are putting on a mystery play called ‘The Murder at Haversham Manor’. They soon discover that everything that possibly can go wrong…certainly does, much to the disparity of the performers, but equally providing top-level entertainment for the audience.
What makes this performance unique, is that most actors double-up as two characters, meaning that it is incredibly multi-layered and occasionally hard to follow, but then again, that kind of goes alongside the nonsensical and turbulent happenings on stage.
As well as all the expected mischief running throughout, this unique rendition of a murder mystery, contains endless thrills, themes of fraud and embezzlement, accusations, affairs, and of course the expected mysterious and dramatic murders…what more could you want?!
Straight away, the audience began to realise they are in for an absolute treat, and the laughter remained a constant throughout the entirely of the production. This was an incredibly immersive performance, with the show beginning from the moment the audience entered the auditorium. Actors began appearing from all areas of the theatre, interacting with audience members and offering the first introduction to mishaps and things already going wrong, searching for a mystery dog and trying to repair bits of set that has already began falling off, are just a few examples.
There was endless comic moments and the physical comedy for all performer’s was impeccable. You can appreciate the extend of physical comedy that each of the performers demonstrated, hanging, interacting, and balancing, from all parts of the staging and set, which must be very physically demanding. Particularly funny, was the scene that got stuck on repeat, ‘Then who could of killed him?’ And a utterly disastrous sword fight, as well as plenty of slap-stick comic fall, trips, and other injuries from the performers, that had the audience gasping cheering and evening screaming, especially when the actors bumped into objects and fall from high platforms.
The set in this production was outstanding, constantly transforming and constantly malfunctioning and breaking at the show goes on. In Act 2, just when your thinking, surely it can’t get any worse, it really does…and even more disastrous surprises are in store. There really was no part of the self-destructing set that was left untouched, and as the show came to a dramatic, and very chaotic finale, everything, even the walls of the set came crashing down.
Sandra Wilkinson as ‘hysterical’ Florence Colleymoore was brilliant, especially during the wrestler-style fight scene, between her and her overenthusiastic understudy during their battle for the spotlight, also very well played by
The director, who also doubles up as inspector Carter in their version of the murder mystery ‘show’ introduces the performance and he is undoubtedly very charismatic, a credit to Harry Boyd did this role perfectly. A nice touch was when the inspector made the performance more personal to the Liverpool audience, and his improvisation skills were brilliant with quick and witty jokes in response to the audiences cheeky heckles.
Endearing Cecile Haversham, played by the talented Max Bennett won the audience over and his cheeky facial expression’s and his comic timing was fantastic.
All of the performers played a strong part join in the production, even the ‘stage crew’ and ‘Sound technician’ who was in the box, who kept on missing his sound cues and then having a role that he didn’t sign up for, nearer the end of the performance.
The level of choreography and rehearsal that must of gone into the production is immense and the scripted awkward silences were brilliant and definitely added to the humour. Additionally, the cleverly designed set with everything at the wrong place, at the wrong time, is what makes this a truly genius production.
Mischief Theatre Company provide a performance that is exactly what it says in the title. Plenty of mischief, a lot of performance trickery, and unlimited entertainment!
The Play That Goes Wrong is showing from Monday 23 May – Saturday 28 May 2022. 4.5 Stars. To buy tickets, click here…