Arsenic and Old Lace
Norwich Theatre Royal
> Norwich Theatre Royal
Brooklyn broads don't seem so dull after all in Robin Herford's new production of Arsenic and Old Lace. I don't think I've ever seen a family with so many skeletons in cupboards... under window seats...in the basement...and all at the whim of two such nice-looking old ladies.
The show has always been subtle, grown-up farce and is famously black in its humour. Its very title has become a by-word for lethal but lovely spinsters. And the production ran and ran on both sides of the Atlantic.
And what fun it all was on stage last night. Almost like musical comedy without the songs. It's no surprise to find that the creative team who adapted it for Broadway – Howard Lindsay and Russell Crouse – also cooked up the Thirties hit Anything Goes.
But even without a musical underscore, the comic timing was so perfect you could almost have been listening to a series of duets, solos and ensemble suites.
Angela Thorne (to the Manor Born) and Brigit Forsyth (Boon/Poirot) hit just the right notes as the well-meaning murderesses. Between them, they exuded a sense of calm finality, with their definite little gestures and recipes for poison. Sylvester McCoy also gave a star turn, with a voice that had all the melodies of the quintessential gangster.
- 1 Hermes courier and his wife could be jailed over ‘stolen parcels’
- 2 Obituary: Tributes after 'heart-shaped hole' is left following teaching assistant's death
- 3 How Norfolk's current Covid figures compare to November 2020 lockdown
- 4 Man arrested on suspicion of sexually assaulting girl on her way to school
- 5 Row erupts after dozens of trees aligning footpath chopped down
- 6 Christmas lights switch-on cancelled due to forecasted high winds
- 7 Fire crews tackle large barn blaze
- 8 Significant damage to church after metal stolen from roof
- 9 Primary pupil sexually assaulted on way to school
- 10 Freezing cold temperatures could see snow in parts of Norfolk this weekend
It was well-crafted comedy.