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Review: On The Razzle, Sheringham Players

08:46 12 June 2014

Jane Hodson, Graham Blyth  and Brenda Williams in On The Razzle. Picture: Submitted

Jane Hodson, Graham Blyth and Brenda Williams in On The Razzle. Picture: Submitted

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On The Razzle,

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Sheringham Little Theatre,

The Sheringham Players

Stoppard’s farce is a free adaptation of a 19th century comedy that provided the plot for Hello, Dolly! via The Merchant of Yonkers, and The Matchmaker.

So its pedigree is already well-established but what Stoppard does is embellish it with his own brand of wit, tortured double-entendres and puns, thus preserving good, old-fashioned entertainment but with a modern - albeit 1980s - silliness.

Set in 1910, it tells how two grocery store assistants Christopher and Weinberl, played by H J Warrington and the excellent Tim Travers, decide to go “on the razzle” to Vienna while their boss, Herr Zangler, played with sublime understatement by Graham Blyth, is away – also in Vienna.

In one day they manage to go from humble shop workers to landed gentry to Don Juans.

The subsequent frantic frolics are exacerbated by the elopement of Zangler’s niece Marie (Chloe Annison) and her ne’er-do-well suitor, Sonders, a nicely fey Joe Burnham.

And the subsequent hidings and seekings and dressings up gives the cast – particularly the minor roles who often get the best laughs - a chance to show off their stage craft and comic delivery.

Mention must also be made of the fantastic costumes put together by head of wardrobe, Libby Henshaw.

In their 50th anniversary year, the Sheringham Players pull off this Viennese-inspired confection with style - as sharp and sweet as a Sacher torte.

The play runs until Saturday June 14.

Patrick Prekopp

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