Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Jeeves and Wooster in Perfect Nonsense

Last night I went to see
The play was based on P.G Wodehouse's 'Code of the Woosters'.

I am a big fan of P.G Wodehouse's novels, and 90s tv series Jeeves and Wooster with Stephan Fry and Hugh Laurie.  As a result, I have always thought of Laurie and Fry as the perfect Wooster and Jeeves, so I have to admit that I went to the theatre fully expecting to be disappointed by the actors. Not a great attitude to have I know but I felt that no one could be as good as Laurie and Fry.

Stephan Fry and Jeeves and Hugh Laurie as Bertie in Jeeves and Wooster

However I couldn't have been more wrong. The play was fabulous. I was in fits of laughter all the way through. Matthew Macfadyen was very good as Jeeves but I felt he was just a bit too loud - he seemed to shout everything when he was playing Jeeves (he played a number of roles. There were only 3 members of the cast and several parts!) So for me Stephan Fry is still the best Jeeves. Having said this, I do think that Matthew Macfadyen is an amazing actor and that he played all his parts, throughout the play, brilliantly, he just isn't the perfect Jeeves. However, Hugh Laurie now has serious competition, Stephen Mangan was absolutely wonderful as Bertie. 

There was also a third actor, Mark Hadfield, who mainly played the part of Seppings, Bertie's aunt's butler. I say mainly as he also played Bertie's aunt and another character or two (it was a sort of play within a play. Confusing to explain but it worked perfectly on the stage), he was also wonderful.

And just when I thought the play couldn't get any better, the cast finished off with a display of the Charleston!!! :) 

Frankly I think it is one of the best plays I have ever seen, and I would definitely recommend it, even to non P.G Wodehouse fans. They are having a slight change of cast at the end of this month though, the two main actors are changing.

Jeeves will be played by Mark Heap (period drama fans will recognise him as the postman from Lark Rise to Candleford). Bertie will be played by the comedian Robert Webb. Both are great actors so I am sure the play will continue to be fabulous. :)

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