Monday, 22 June 2015

Nottingham Theatre Royal

I saw this show a few years ago at the Theatre Royal. I'm not a massive Python fan but I loved this show then. This time round I love it even more. They reckoned "The Servant Of Two Masters" was the funniest show in the world but this show blows that one out of the water.

Lovingly ripped off from "Monty Python and The Holy Grail", every single minute of this show is funny. King Arthur and his trusty sidekick, Patsy are looking for knights to join them to find the Holy Grail. Written by Eric Idle, who also made an appearance as God (comedically typecast) with the music written by John Du Prez. Here's a music fact, the two of them also wrote the theme to "One Foot In the Grave" and Eric recorded the song as well.

Arthur, Patsy, and the knights overcome several obstacles with lots of silliness and end up with the marriage of Arthur and The Lady in the Lake, aka Guinevere.

One of the songs state that you have to have a star to put on a musical and this show had many stars who shone very bright.

i just knew that casting Joe Pasquale as King Arthur was bound to be a success and I was not wrong, Joe was perfect for the role and even managed to get some ad libbing in the show. With Joe's talent for ad libbing and knowing just how far to go with it,he added a little something extra to the mix. How Will Hawkesworth (Robin), managed not to laugh in the "Helen Mirren" section, I'll never know, true professional.

Casting Joe's son, Joe Tracini, as Patsy was a casting made in comedy heaven, because they worked so well together. There's just something wonderful about an actor who doesn't have to do much to raise a smile, and Joe T has obviously inherited this talent from his dad. The coconut clacking Patsy is a wonderful role for Joe T. It's only when you see a TV actor like Joe Tracini on stage that you really appreciate their comic timing and acting talent. I've never been a fan of Hollyoaks, but after tonight I am a fan of Joe Tracini.

The Lady In The Lake was played by Sarah Earnshaw. Again, what an amazing piece of casting! Sarah has a flair for comedy which is only overshadowed by her beautiful,powerful voice. Her duet with Galahad, played by Richard Meek, of "The Song That Goes Like This" was musical comedy heaven and one of my many highlights of the show.

A brilliant supporting cast made this an evening that I won't forget for a long time. The show is funny, possibly the funniest show I've ever seen,and especially in the hands of Pasquale, Tracini and Earnshaw, this trio put all previous casts in the shade.

There are some memorable songs here as well as memorable performances. The aforementioned "The Song that Goes Like This", "He's Not Dead Yet", "I'm All Alone", the very camp "His Name Is Lancelot" and of course "Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life", which Joe Tracini teased into life with twinkle in his eye, knowing the reaction it was going to get.

Every actor looked like they were having just as much fun on stage as we were in the audience, and that kind of enjoyment is so contagious.

It is bright, it is fun, it is camp, it is brash and ever so non politically correct, and that is a perfect recipe for a good old night out at the theatre. And another directorial success for the very talented and all round nice person, Mr Christopher Luscombe.

"Spamalot" is at the Nottingham Theatre Royal until Saturday 4 July 2015

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