Five Reasons To See... See How They RunDate: 20 August 2011
Alastair Whatley is the artistic director of Original Theatre Company, founded in 2004. This new touring production, directed by Christopher Harper, is being mounted in association with Eastbourne Theatres, South Hill Park and The Anvil, Basingstoke. It tours in repertoire from September with Twelfth Night, also directed by Whatley. Both productions have the same cast.
1. It’s the funniest play ever written...
Without any doubt it keeps the audience bubbling on the verge of outright hilarity, audience members frequently come out clutching their sides in the pain of having laughed almost consistently for two hours. And there are not many plays that can make that claim.
2. It’s performed by a truly wonderful cast.
They are all investing the play with a real emotional life – spending the first week simply questioning every line of the play. It is absolutely crucial with farce to find the truth behind the extraordinary situations the characters find themselves in. The big pitfall is to start sending it all up with knowing glances to the audience.
The characters in See How They See Run all find themselves teetering on the brink of tragedy; it has to be absolutely real to them. It has been a joy to our have our cast approach this play with such commitment. It stars Arthur Bostrom as the Bishop of Lax, [Siobhan O’Kelly] as Penelope and Lucy Speed as Miss Skillon.
3. It’s a real period piece.
The play features a couple of characters who like King himself were once actors, and the play is peppered with references not only to what the life of a touring actor in the 1940s was like, but also a wholly accurate portrayal of a wartime English village.
4. It’s more than ”just another farce”.
From Penelope, the former actress shaking the vicarage and the village with her outrageous trousers and behaviour to the German soldier who King refers to only as “The Man” – thereby managing to avoid stereotyping a character that could have so easily have been sent up as the purely evil token Nazi. First and foremost it is a wonderfully constructed farce, but beating just below the surface lies a play that reveals the state of a nation in the midst of war, austerity and change.
5. There’s a real dog...
Everyone has expected a touring production to forgo this particular demand, but we are determined to fulfil King’s vision. Its appearance will no doubt steal the show from all the actors – so its continued presence may not be guaranteed! Catch it while you can.
Back to Southeast Homepage