Cambridge Footlights - Beyond a Joke

Norwich Playhouse

Norwich Playhouse

In this sometimes hilarious, bleak vision of Blighty, Cambridge Footlights brought us a series of sketches full of nowhere people going nowhere in the cold.

What linked these disparate nomads together was their dogged determination to get somewhere, even though most of them had no idea where they were going, or of the possible danger they might encounter when they got there: a bit like lemmings.

And just like those sad little furry creatures, all ready to jump, these lonely, isolated people were led onwards by despair. From the weatherman who didn't know what he was saying any more or care about the people he was saying it to; to the employees perpetually locked in their office; to the concert pianist whose hands were paws; to the runaway bulimic woman: all of them were journeying blindly onwards, sometimes laughing at their own tears.

This is Cambridge Footlights' 121st year and there is still a sense of something important brewing here.

And although audiences might feel that this was more of a piece of theatre than a sketch show, owing more to Chekhov than to the Comedy Store, I liked it. There was a compassion to the humour. And a fearlessness in the face of risky material. And where there's a bit of love and daring left, then hope is not dead.