A Funny Thing Happened..., Norwich

A portrait of the barmy days of ancient Rome, a right carry on round the coliseum with American razzmatazz to make all the innuendoes go with a Stephen Sondheim swing, A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum is, well, just that...

A portrait of the barmy days of ancient Rome, a right carry on round the coliseum with American razzmatazz to make all the innuendoes go with a Stephen Sondheim swing, A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum is, well, just that, and with the Maddermarket audience enjoying every titter, the famous old Shevelove and Gelbart farce reveals that it still has legs.

No disrespect to a gaggle of girls with lots of oomph, there's nothing to touch the fair-haired Trevor Burton's Hysterium, in short tunic or full-length skirt, with limbs that stretch on forever and twist with variable geometry, whether he's dead or alive, active or passive.

John Mangan combines the improbable role of Lycus with the considerable duties of directing a large cast, while David Lambert, as Pseudolus, commands the stage as a master of ceremonies who has to keep the balls in the air while events are moving swiftly. They seem to go all the faster because Geoffrey Hedger's Erronius goes round and round the plot so slowly before coming to the point.

Directed by Paul Winter, a four-piece band puts rhythm into the musical backing, and Julia Fallon's costumes add a dimension to all the characters. Julia Caesar makes a cameo appearance at the finale to give the performance the thumbs up.