My last outing to the Greenwich Playhouse didn’t go too well but despite what I said in my review, they asked me back and so this week I found myself, once again, devouring a plate of tasty pre-threatre ribs and chips in the pub below the theatre.
All I knew about Comedy of Errors prior to settling down in my seat was that there are two sets of twins involved. With Shakespeare’s penchant for mistaken identity as a narrative thread it didn’t take long to work out where this one was going.
Director Bryn Holding has chosen to set the piece in a 1950s seaside resort with three beach huts at the back of the stage and one set of twins dressed in shorts, striped t-shirts, deck pumps and knotted hankies on their heads.
The knotted-hankie twins are from a poor family the other a rich. The poor twins are adopted by the rich twins father and brought up to be their servants. Alas though siblings are separated in a storm and brought up independently until one of the rich twins, with servant twin in tow, sets out to find his brother.
When the brother arrives at his twins home town what ensues is a lot of mistaken identity. A lot of mistaken identity.
And from that last comment you can probably guess that this production, by Sell A Door, was far more enjoyable than the Dracula I saw last time. OK, so it’s not the best acting I’ve seen, some of the physical comedy needs to become a bit more slick (this was the second preview) and I’m not sure the 50’s setting adds anything but I laughed and was generally entertained. It seemed to rattle along at an engaging pace and they’ve made the best of what, no doubt, is a miniscule production budget.
If it’s a bit of cheap, fun, Shakespeare you are after then it’s worth a look. I’m giving it three stars.
Comedy of Errors is on until Feb 20. Click on the slide show below to see more production shots.