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Not Now Darling

 

NODA review of Not Now Darling by Wendy Newton

 

This may be termed as a “vintage farce” written by Ray Cooney and John Chapman way back in the 1960’s, but oh my goodness, how it has stood the test of time! Indeed it still has the audience hooked and rolling in the aisles from the word go. The script is hilarious and shows a catalogue of total blunders with the mistaken identities, so to savour the full impact of the farcical comedy, it requires fast delivery of the ingeniously written script along with some well timed comings, goings and antics of the various characters.

 

There are many considerations to be made for farce, initially and probably most importantly, the casting is paramount to it’s success. Along with an effective and well planned set, in order to create the right ambience and authenticity of the era, in which the play takes place.

 

Pam Foy (Director) did an absolute sterling job with all of the above! Her choice of cast was totally suited to all of the characters and there wasn’t one weak link, her decision to have a split level set was excellent as the stage itself at this venue is quite large for a Play, so it gave an extra dimension to the movement and direction of the cast in their entrances and exits, making it look faster and even more hilarious. She had certainly made sure that everyone pulled together and worked hard to make it a success.

 

It would be unfair of me to mention individuals, as everyone was so good and suited to their particular roles.

 

The whole cast worked well with each other and showed total teamwork, delivering a fast moving script making sure that they were all word perfect, with the addition of various dialects which were excellent and held throughout.

 

Everyone seemed really comfortable in their respective roles and indeed, the delivery of lines was excellent, every word heard with great projection and made to sound like actual conversation, as opposed to just saying the lines, which can sometimes happen!

 

Obviously extremely well rehearsed as the entrances and exits were well timed and everyone was on the ball.

 

The Set was well designed and built well with no “wobbly” bits which can sometimes happen with a static set with lots of opening and closing doors, Carpeted throughout was a really good idea and stopped the worry of noisy footwear. I particularly thought that the French Windows on to the balcony with street traffic heard when necessary, gave a realistic touch. It was well dressed and the props looked quite authentic.

 

Costuming was really well thought out and designed, with the robing and dis-robing where necessary was well “covered” shall we say!? In fact all of the cast where immaculately turned out, with some particularly great hair styles for the ladies and attention to detail to give the right look for 1968.

 

Everything was well thought out for this production, it was obvious that a no ending amount of hard work and dedication had been spent, to get the finished product to such a standard.

 

I would like to Congratulate the whole company on such a wonderful production. From behind the Footlights to the Front of House you have all worked so hard.

 

Thanking you for the wonderful hospitality. I thoroughly enjoyed my evening with you all.

 

Well Done and hope to see you again soon.


 

Champion Review of Not Now Darling

 

Top performances in laughter-filled farce

Not Now Darling

Waterloo and Crosby Theatre Company

Crosby Civic Hall

Review by Jenny Robson

 

MASTER of farce Ray Cooney co-wrote this with John Chapman in 1967 and the storyline is perhaps better suited to that era - the days when owning a mink coat was almost every girl's dream.

 

Pamela Foy has expertly directed the accomplished cast who gelled well in this production set in Bodley, Bodley & Crouch - a London fur emporium.

 

Tony O'Keefe steals the show as Gilbert Bodley. Taking advantage of his wife being away he tries to seduce the sexy and beautiful Janie McMichael (Claudia Molyneux) who is married to Harry (another good portrayal by Danny Walsh).

 

You might expect a bedroom scene rather than a fur salon. The scanty plot revolves around the fact that Gilbert wants Janie to have the coat so much that he is prepared to fork out £4,500 of his own money towards the cost.

 

In true farcical fashion everything disintegrates when Harry's secretary/mistress arrives - Sue Lawson, another dolly bird played by Becky Weymouth - followed later by her husband Danny (Phill Lawler).

 

The other Bodley in the firm is wife, Maude (Alison Jones) who returns earlier than planned (of course!) causing Gilbert to tell a string of untruths laying the blame squarely on the shoulders of Arnold Crouch (Les Longley).

 

Secretary Miss Tipdale (a lovely portrayal by Melanie de Castro) secretly yearns for Crouch and is perfectly turned out with beautifully coiffured hair.

 

Commander Frencham (Roy Hartley) and his wife (Marian Yates) drop in and out with tales of their car having been towed away (and all for the want of a sixpence!) and Miss Whittington (Sophie Weymouth) completes the cast as a young model who opens and closes the play.

 

Clothes discarded over the balcony, bras hanging from clock-hands and a myriad of double entendres create many laughs!

 

Score: Three out of five - Amusing shenanigans (but I'm against the wearing of fur)!

 
 
 
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