The Trafalgar Studios 2 is becoming the go-to West End theatre for transfers from pub and small fringe venues. The latest, from the Old Red Lion Pub Theatre, is a short but superbly rib ticklish farce: The Play That Goes Wrong.
As the title suggests it's about a play that has a few problems. A polytechnic drama society is putting on a murder mystery and it is deliciously badly done and cock-up riddled. There are all the usual bad acting habits together with forgetten lines, repeated lines, wrong entrances, wrong exits, missing props or props breaking or malfunctioning, farce staples involving a door and various injuries inadvertently sustained.
And it is a real rib tickler - not quite as howling-with-laughter funny as the man sat behind me seemed to think but it definitely packs in plenty of laughs. Towards the end it gets a little bit chaotic so that the plot twists of the whodunit, play-within-the-play are lost but it doesn't matter too much. Some of the gags start to become a little over stretched but at an hours running time it doesn't outstay it welcome. In fact, I think it was the perfect length for a farce.
If you fancy a laugh for an hour pop along to the Trafalgar Studios 2 between now and May 18. There are two performances every night and matinees on Thursdays and Saturdays.
Wasn't sure I'd get one for this but it turns out that Henry Lewis who plays Robert was in Mercury Fur with Olly Alexander who is currently in Peter and Alice with Mr W and has previously acted with him in Bright Star.