Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Forget Me Knot Theatre People -Review- Customs House, South Shields

Forget Me Knot
Theatre People
Customs House, South Shields
Sept 28 2010

Robert Zeinfeld is a confused man- not of his own doing- a bump on the head resulting in amnesia and a night in the cells have attributed to that.
Inspector Monroe is also a confused man- he has nobody to blame but himself.
Robert had been found wandering the streets in his confused state, not sure of any what/if’s or but’s. His filofax knows who he is – but do anybody else? Monroe is on the case-he seems to think he is anyway!!! More confusion rains down when Robert’s frightful wife is summoned and she doesn’t know many if’s or but’s either. What she does know is that Robert shouldn’t be anywhere near where he was found and probably with a mistress, who he definitely shouldn’t be anywhere near. The mistress (Samantha) turns up later and all ‘hell and damnation’ of confusion is unleashed upon the stage.

Is Robert who everybody else says he is?
Does he really have amnesia?
If he doesn’t then what the hell is he doing with a wife like that in the first place?
Is anybody actually who they maintain they are?
Am I really reviewing this play in South Shields or am I really in The Bahamas?

What I do know is Forget Me Knot is one of the funniest British farces that I have come across with superb laugh out loud comedy brought to life by four fine actors.

Robert played by Jay Mullen is not only a great actor but also founder and owner of Theatre People. I have absolutely no confusion whatsoever about his ability on the boards. Both on and off the stage his professionalism shines through.
The bungling Inspector Monroe (no wonder The Bill has parted company from our tv screens with policemen like him around!) played by the impressive Philip Chamberlin has a long history of performance behind him, and a fantastic performance he gave tonight.
Corinne Kilvington as the horrid Mrs. Zeinfeld has come a long way since her honours degree in theatre around 2002. She has put in lots of hard work and it all came across brilliantly to the audience.
Nicola Michelle Airey as Samantha- the bit on the side- shouted, cursed and sexily swayed across the stage as though this was all real life. I wouldn’t mind having recurring amnesia if she was acting along with me.

A simple but effective stage set design of a police office and interrogation room filled the stage with as much comedy as the performers did. I hope it stands up to a few more nights of door slamming!
It did sadden me that the South Shields folk didn’t come along and embrace this great play. The sparse crowd though did summon up enough laughter to fill the room. Plays like this could well be a thing of the past if the public can’t congregate en masse.

Forget Me Knot is well worth the asking price of £10 at the Customs House. It is also being performed in Sunderland at Infinity Bar & Entertainment Suite (previously The Theatre Restaurant) on Saturday 2nd October - tickets are £19.95 but includes a 2-course meal: BOX OFFICE 0191 567 0611.

Michael Hunter

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