Long Tooth

* * * * *
5 stars

Frenetic, zany and very funny sums up the character comedy written and performed by Trudi Jackson and Vivienne Gibbs. Director Hannah Eidenhow deserves much credit for making sense of the mayhem on stage.

Friends Liz and Julie are two contrasting characters. Liz is the intellectual one, or so she believes, and loves doing dramatical historical roles, being into recreational escapism. Julie is the more down to earth type and a bit dippy.

Liz first appears on stage laden with costumes and plays a whole range of characters including Joan of Arc, Marie Antoinette and Cleopatra. She does change after change of wigs and costumes to play each character in an over the top manner. By the time the show closes she is down to her underwear.

Julie appears in a 1950’s frock which is how she is dressed all the way through. She just wants to do Elvis impressions but is cajoled into taking on the minor roles as Liz does her dramatic, emotional acting. However, she never gets it quite right. The tension builds between the two and a fight results. As mock fights go, this one is pretty physical and convincing.

The scenes do have echoes of the historical playlets that Morecambe and Wise performed many years ago and that is a real achievement. In the best tradition of music hall they finish with a song and dance routine. Smashing stuff.

Ben

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