Classics of sorts

Agamemnon by Steven Berkoff told the timeless tale of the curse of the house of Atreus. Performed in loincloths with big hair (plus the director’s note in the programme tells of the cast’s hatred of the caked-on mud) on a propless stage, this energetic show went from slow motion horse galloping to fast bath murdering in a dark, moody way. To follow, a completely different type of classic, with a stage production of the 80s (well, I assumed that, but I’ve just checked and it was actually 1990) computer game The Secret of Monkey Island. Very reminiscent of the game itself in its manner and execution, this was a lighthearted romp through Melee Island.

Simon Munnery up next, and I’m sure I will remember his bubble hat for a long time. Any show including zeppelins is going to be a good one, and this certainly was, also including a poem read by the city of London, and two microphones having a chat.

Back to theatre for The Wolves of Willoughby Chase, staged in an appropriately run-down C soco 2a. The production always had the feeling of things on the border closing in, and though my enjoyment of the show was slightly marred by one or two young kids in the audience who would not stop asking questions (well below the age suggested in the programme, I’m fine with it in appropriate situations as Jabberwocky will say in a couple of days (ooh, spooky)), this was an enjoyable version of the book, from the train journey beset by actual wolves to the sinister metaphorical wolves of the governess and schoolmistress.

Lastly for the day was Helen Keen’s Spacetacular, which as well as a shadow puppet show about the moon and its inhabitants (Clangers, or lizard men?) included guest turns from an astrophysicist talking about gamma ray bursts and Amateur Transplants singing some vaguely (and some not at all) science related songs. Helen had provided us all with some tin foil before the show to fashion as was our wont, and the ray gun someone near me had made was very detailed and certainly deserved the prize it won.

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