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A rousing start to the play and to the autumn/winter season at the Rep.

I thoroughly enjoyed the play that dealt with a school in a slightly deprived area, and charted the arrival of a new drama teacher, showing the pupils and teachers reactions.  Lots of laugh out loud moments, particularly for the teachers in the audience.

The set was very minimalistic, which allowed the cast plenty of scope for their characterisations, which were many.  The music was well-chosen and very appropriate.

Good lighting enhanced the action, although at one stage I was slightly perturbed that the spot from the side of the stage was casting a shadow over the faces of the actors, i.e. when the main male character was talking to the other female characters there was a shadow over their faces, which meant we were missing their reactions, just a small point.

Angela Goss had directed the piece so that it was very slick, and the cast effected excellent quick changes from character to character, with the necessary costume additions and props being placed to hand so that there was no let up in the pace – very well done.

The cast of three – Adam Butcher, Katy Elliott and Sarah Wilkinson – played all the various characters within the play, and with great aplomb.

I was very taken by Adam Butcher, he got the awful Salty very well, and transitioned so quickly to the relatively normal Mr. Nixon, he then accomplished various other characters mostly rather horrible pupils, which contrasted greatly with Mr Nixon – excellent portrayals Adam.  

Katy Elliott was Hobby, a rather slow pupil, who then transitioned into Mrs Parry the very proper Head, Mavis (with a lovely Welsh accent) and various other characters, including the mustachioed Mr Basford, deep voiced and harrumphing like an army major – all excellently done – the only one I didn’t really take to was Katy’s Oggy Moxon, I thought he was better portrayed by Adam and Sarah!

The final actor as Gail, was Sarah Wilkinson, who created a number of fine characters, notably Jackie Prime – gym teacher, who Mr Nixon fancied, and also Oggy Moxon, along with others including Mr Basford.  No mean feat to get the different personas, again very well done.

I thought the pace and contrasts within the play made this a very funny play that rang true to our perceptions of the school pupils depicted and the unfortunate teachers.

A great start to the Rep’s season.

Dunstable Rep


review date: 25th September 2018

Little Theatre, Dunstable

Director:  Angela Goss


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