Spamalot canters to the West End after successful shows in Bromley
AFTER a successful run at Bromley’s Churchill Theatre, the cast of Spamalot have picked up their coconut shells and trotted to the West End.
At the start of the run at the Harold Pinter Theatre near Leicester Square, the audience were treated to an evening of fish slapping, sword fighting and hilarious songs.
Much of the cast from the Bromley run have made the move to London, including Marcus Brigstocke as King Arthur, Todd Carty as his trusty sidekick Patsy and Bonnie Langford as the Lady of the Lake.
Brigstocke will be taking a one-month break from the show in order to return to stand-up at the Edinburgh festival, with Dead Ringers impressionist Jon Culshaw set to take over.
And if this performance is anything to go by, Culshaw has a tough act to follow.
Brigstocke excelled as King Arthur, marching around the stage with purpose and delivering his lines flawlessly as he and his knights searched for the Holy Grail.
There were even chances to add some topical jokes to the show, most notably one about telling Lord Coe how to fill the seats available in a dig at the Olympic no-shows.
Other jokes added to the production included one of the cast dressed up as London Mayor Boris Johnson cycling across the stage and an expanded dig at celebritities including Ozzy Osbourne, Jedward and Susan Boyle.
Carty as Patsy worked very well, with his downtrodden sideways glances at the audiences just as funny as his jokes, while Langford belted out her songs with gusto, gaining extra laughs with her purposefully over the top vocal gymnastics.
The performance of Kit Orton was fantastic, not only as Lancelot but also displaying the outrageous accent of the French taunter, which was a real highlight of the show.
Orton also excelled as a Knight who says Ni, dancing perfectly in time while on stilts and improvising a long and complicated tongue-twister knowing Brigstocke has to repeat it during his next line.
It is a great credit to the show that every one of the songs are incredibly funny, whether it be the theatrical pastiche The Song That Goes Like This, the showbiz glamour of Camelot or the Monty Python classics of Knights of the Round Table and Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life.
The sets were cleverly designed, with hidden jokes such as the appearance of a wind turbine in the background and a castle on the side of the stage cleverly transformed by the use of a number of different flags.
There were also inventive use of the set during the sword fight between King Arthur and the Dark Night.
It really doesn’t matter whether you have seen the show before or not, Spamalot is a tremendously silly way to spend an evening and it would be very difficult to find a show which delivers as many laughs.
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