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REVIEW: The Little Theatre Company - Up Pompeii.

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: June 26, 2014

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IT is laughter all the way at Burton Brewhouse this week.

The Little Theatre Company is presenting Up Pompeii, featuring characters seen on stage, TV and the big screen in the days of Frankie Howerd.

Miles Tredinnick’s sparkling script brought the same saucy mix of double meanings an sexy liaisons which we enjoyed before the invention of unfunny “alternative comedy”.

Peter Clemson as Howerd’s character Lurcio, head slave of a lecherous Roman senator, gave an outstanding performance, milking the double entendres and anachronisms for all they were worth.

He didn’t make the mistake of aping Howerd, but put over the gags with the same apparent spontaneity as the great man himself once did.

Craig Atkinson was sound as his fellow slave and rival in love and for the top job in the crazy household.

Phil Robinson was delightful as the hypocritical and none-too-bright senator, as was Sarah Spencer as his not quite prim and proper wife.

Their naïve son, whose love poems never rhymed, was convincingly played by Jack Hawkins.

Peter Banton was believably fearsome as Captain Treacherus and Daniel Tunks was always funny as his rather odd henchman.

Ladies more than ready for love _ there was no politically correct nonsense in this show _were portrayed by Jodie Whitehead, Vanessa Birch and Vicky Fryer. Suitably eerie as the soothsayer (“Woe, woe, and thrice woe”) was Jane German.

Thanks to Vesuvius everything came to an end with a bang _ or several bangs if you will forgive the expression.

Once again the show was a triumph for director John Bowness. It continues nightly at 7.30pm with a 2.30pm matinee on Saturday. Box office 01283 508100.

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