Friday (arrived in the evening)
A production of a Shakespeare play with classically trained actors- one of whom is steaming drunk. The drunk actor can do anything that seems like a good idea at the time, while the rest of the cast try and keep the show on track. There's a compere who reminds them of the rules, like not being allowed to touch the scenery (he also feeds them more booze if they start sobering up. This evening's compere had chosen to wear sparkly shorts and a top hat and not much else.) It was really fun!
This year they did The Two Gentlemen of Verona. (An audience member prompted the drunk actor at one point, leading to a bit of a rant- "You've read this play? Why!? It's shit! We thought we'd do something interesting for his 350th, his first play, but it's rubbish. 'His worst comedy'- wikipedia says that. Wikipedia!")
Launce had become Launcetta, and an audience member was dragged in to play her dog Crab, which had some nice business. The cast were all good but my notes are all about the drunk one! (Oh yeah, except one about a nice bit of staging where the guy who's trying to get his girlfriend to escape out a window has a ropeladder wrapped many times round himself under a cloak, and takes his time in unwinding). The drunk guy was Proteus this performance.
On managing to get through a soliloquy- "Yahtzee, motherfuckers!" Watching some stage business with Launcetta riding a suitcase offstage- "I directed this. For some reason I thought that was a good idea." He does his first speech to his best friend Valentine by going "Whassup, blood" and when V called him "blood" back, goes "Ooh, ad-libbing!" (He tells us that he thinks the Proteus-Valentine backstory definitely includes shagging.) He isn't allowed a sword for the fight, leading to a duel with an inflatable dolphin. He tells the audience gossip about one of the cast; flicks somebody's codpiece; says Sylvia's headdress makes her look like an alien; comes on in someone else's scene to give the tech guy some lego props left behind by the previous person in the venue (and has to be dragged back up the aisle and offstage by the compere); when Valentine takes off his disguise, goes "Fuck me, it's Valentine! [Sound effect of Eastenders drums]"; and subtly shows the worrying overtones of one scene by saying "This is where Proteus gets a bit rapey. Don't worry, it resolves itself in a minute. Um, I have some lines."
Literally a game of Countdown with comedians- and yes, they were doing it before 8 Out of 10 cats Does Countdown was on. David Morgan is usually the clock/scorekeeper, but was inveigled into being a contestant. Justin Moorhouse beat him easily. The host gave facts about each letter as it was read out, leading to an exchange about chemical symbols (eg N) that ended up with him spitting "Argon, you cunt!"
Carol Vorderman was played by a chubby beared man- he was voice-activated, contestants had to say "Hello, Carol" before he would pick the letters.
This entry was originally posted at http://shark-hat.dreamwidth.org/194