Friday, June 8, 2012

No Sex Please We're British -Review- Customs House

No Sex Please We're British
Customs House
7 June 2012

Everybody loves a good old British farce, nowt wrong with a bit of bawdiness and innuendo. 'Stags and Hens' last year and previously the brilliant 'Noises Off', have shown that Ion Productions under the leadership of Gareth Hunter (director) have a great track record.
'No Sex...' continues this path, with a superb cast assembled to get the chuckles out of The Customs House crowd.
Peter (Stephen Sullivan) and Frances (Kylie Ann Ford) Hunter are settling into newly married life, living just above the bank he works for. Things however go awry (why not, this is a farce remember!) when Frances orders some Scandinavian glassware from the ‘Scandinavian Import Company’. Instead of the items she was hoping for, she instead receives the finest pornography in the form of postcards, films and enough books to fill the British library. This of course being set in the late 60's, this type of adult material was illegal and frowned upon. So a lot of fuss and charging around the great built set (Chris Allen) ensures.
Add to the shock horror of the situation, along comes Peter's mother, Eleanor (Dolores Poretta Brown) a rather snobbish and needy woman, who has a certain penchant for Leslie Bromhead (David Cooke), who happens to be Peter's boss at the Bank, which doesn't bode well for the whole situation.
Peter's respectable colleague Brian Runnicles (James De Lauch Hay, who looks like a very young Richard Burton) is roped, with hilarious consequences, into the destruction and disappearance of the porn.
The Police are never far away in a farce, so Superintendant Paul (John Seymour) is lurking in the shadows, sneaking the odd 'on-duty' vodka and never really figuring anything out.
With bank duties having to continue, amongst the squabbling, a random inspection of all documents is due to take place, up steps Arnold Needham (Keith Wigham) with his offish approach and insomnia.
Getting rid of the pornography is hard enough, but getting rid of two call girls, Susan (Rachael Walsh) and Barbara (Annie Cairns) that the 'Company' send around is going to get a little tricky. A lot of farcial tasks awaits.
 I have only ever seen Sullivan acting, dressed up as a dame in the yearly Westovians Panto, being as camp as ever, but he really is great at acting it straight (as straight as you are ever going to get it in a farce). He was all over the stage coping with everything falling around him, he made it look really easy.
The rest of the cast were superb and brought down the house on many occasion, with their comedy and acting skills.
Great sound and lights from Martin Hogg
Having a great cast and even better laugh out loud script, means that 'No Sex...' is a sure fire winner, it certainly lifted the doom of the rainy skies outside.

No Sex Please We're British, runs until 9th June.

Michael Hunter

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