REVIEW By TOY WIG-WAM
This week the Algarveans Experimental Theatre Group put experimental back into their title with an original adult theme comedy, written and directed by the (in)famous David Butler-Cole, entitled Poor Old Uncle George.
David has provided the Algarveans with many pantomime scripts throughout the years plus his famous adaptation of Allo Allo. Fans were not disappointed with this original offering and its world premiere at the Lagoa Auditorium.
The six members of the cast were all very skilled, some, like Lloyd Delderfield, Boe Williams and Lara Costa, of longer standing with the group and Trevor Herrington, previously known for his excellent singing voice, now thrust into an excellent acting career with promising young stars Charlie Bedingham and Orla Ferrie, who amazed the audience with their polished performances.
The plot was excellent, the humour great. I particularly liked Ada Latitude – played by Lara Costa. Her vocabulary was constantly slightly adrift (Like Mrs. Malaprop) leading her, in the end, to having a hystericallectomy! Her husband, played by Trevor Herrington, treated her with the forbearance and boredom of most husbands, while trying to juggle family bonds against nefarious Insurance Broker, Lloyd Delderfield.
Hats off to the prop designers, loved the piranha paper shredder!
PC Robert Peel (Charlie Bedingham), in rather a Freddie Davies style large helmet that almost covered his ears, carried his role of upright law enforcer confronted with devastating female charms with aplomb. Boe, as the formidable Olga, was quite a convincing Russian “lady of the night”, leaving most of us wondering if she actually did have anything on under the mink coat!
And finally, Auntie Gladys, played by Orla Ferrie. Her performance of an adult temptress, played by a young lady of tender years, was electrifying – watch out for her in the future chaps!
Given that I attended on the first night and knowing that time made available to set up and rehearse at the auditorium is cut to the minimum due to Town Hall budgets, I thought the backstage crew effected scene changes expertly and silently.
There was a slight problem setting up the last scene which they quickly overcame and did not, in any way, spoil our entertainment. I have to say one admires the Algarveans’ continued perseverance to bring us live entertainment for such a small fee and I look forward to their next offering, Hi De Hi, in the autumn.