Tag Archives: John Godber

Review: Bouncers bounces back

9 Sep

Cast from L to R – William Ilkley, Don Gilet, Ian Reddington, Ace Bhatti (photo from http://www.bouncersonstage.com)

John Godber’s Bouncers, which has been frequently produced since its first performance in 1977, has been given a shake-up in this new version for Watershed Productions directed by the esteemed playwright himself. The play is set in and around a nightclub where Judd (William Ilkley), Les (Don Gilet), Lucky Eric (Ian Reddington) and Ralph (Ace Bhatti) work as doormen. The four actors also play a group of girls celebrating their friend’s 21st birthday and a group of rowdy lads out on the pull.

The cast effortlessly switch between their very different roles and seem equally at home in each of them. I particularly enjoyed Bhatti as sexy Susie and he and Reddington have a couple of very funny scenes together highlighting that physical comedy can be just as successful as wordplay. Set and props are minimal but excellent use is made of lighting and sound to create an effective club feel and Lucky Eric’s speeches are most effective when he is placed in a spotlight. These four speeches act as a kind of social commentary breaking up the comedy and reminding the audience that the sort of behaviour these bouncers see every night is very often not funny and can actually be disturbing and demeaning.

Bouncers has been ‘remixed’ before, and Godber has clearly tried his best to make this version as up to date as possible. This was a bit hit and miss. I enjoyed the music choice, for example – the actors first appeared to Rihanna’s Where Have You Been and the group of girls tried and failed to sing along to a Wanted song- but references to ‘records’ and having the girls and guys getting ready for their nights out at a hairdressers and barbers respectively just didn’t sit right. This is a minor complaint, however, of an evening which kept the packed theatre constantly in hysterics.

Bouncers was at York Theatre Royal 5-8 September and is touring until 17th November. For details see www.bouncersonstage.com


13 Feb

Hello out there!

I’ve been silent for a while, I know. Who’d have thought final year would actually be a busy time?! Anyway, I have discovered wordpress for my phone which can only end badly..

I’ve not posted for 3 whole months, they sure went fast. I hope you all had a nice Christmas and managed to see some theatre – I was at York Theatre Royal’s infamous panto!

I’ve not seen much theatre recently, mainly because I’ve been busy studying which really means that I’ve been busy directing a play for the very first time! I meant to blog about the audition/rehearsal process and may still do so but we’re quite far on with preparations now and the performance is in just over a week’s time. I’ll also blog reviews and pics.

Anyway here are the details if you would like to come along.

Teechers by John Godber
21st-25th February
Burton Taylor Studio, Oxford

Tickets are an amazing £6. It’s a really funny but also sentimental and nostalgic play and we have a great cast and a fab soundtrack. I will blog more about it soon.

Rehearsal shot

In the meantime, I’m studying Post 1960 German Drama this term and I’ve already written on Peter Weiss and Peter Handke. If you know any exciting post war German playwrights – whether or not they’re called Peter – do let me know if you think they’re worth a read.