Fall head over heels for this fast-paced farce at The ACE Centre

David Kendrick and Corinna Clarke as illicit lovers Peregrine and Thelma in The Garrick's Will You Still Love Me in the Morning? Photo by Colin Antill Photography.
David Kendrick and Corinna Clarke as illicit lovers Peregrine and Thelma in The Garrick's Will You Still Love Me in the Morning? Photo by Colin Antill Photography.

A fast-paced farce being performed by The Garrick this week moves with the energy of a passionate love affair.

The society is closing its 2018 to 19 season with the sizzling comedy, Will You Still Love Me in The Morning? written by TV veterans Brian Clemens and Dennis Spooners.

It’s a show full of slapstick, sexual quips and silliness that fans of farce will fall head over heels for.

Granted, director Neil Tranmer and the production team faced a number of technical issues in a performance earlier this week.

But the stellar cast soldiered on regardless, delivering their lines with both confidence and comical brilliance.

The tale centres on newlyweds Jeremy and Celia, who arrive home a week early from their disastrous honeymoon, with an unconsummated marriage.

But trouble brews when they discover both Jeremy’s employers, Humphrey and Peregrine, have accepted his offer to stay in his house while the newlyweds are away - and each has secretly brought the other’s wife, with whom they are having a passionate affair.

Jeremy discovers one illicit couple; Celia the other; and both offer separate invitations to dinner that night.

Can Celia and her husband keep the two adulterous couples from discovering the other’s secret, and in doing so negotiate a promotion for Jeremy?

Or is disaster inevitable, destroying his shot at becoming a partner in the firm?

Meanwhile, hapless plumber Sid is knee-deep in water in the basement, making a mess of a problem he came to fix.

The chemistry on stage bubbled between Gary Leonard and Sophie Greenwood, who play the newlyweds.

Sophie as always was a picture of sophistication, performing with admirable composure, as Celia calmly rejects her husband’s persistent attempts to seduce her.

This sense of control throughout only makes Celia’s reaction of shock and panic when she discovers the affairs all the funnier - and Sophie captures these scenes wonderfully.

Meanwhile, Gary Leonard was brilliantly funny as Jeremy, oozing confidence and plenty of character and never seeming fazed by any of the technical issues. As always, his performance was polished and professional.

Fantastic support came from Simon Bailey and David Kendrick, who played, respectively, the cool and calm Humphrey and the more anxious Peregrine.

Both were naturals on stage and their comical timing was spot on.

Depicting their wives, Sara and Thelma, are Susan Dinsdale and Corinna Clarke.

Corinna ought to be proud of her confident and articulate debut performance with The Garrick in the role of straight-talking Thelma while Susan brought warmth and light to the stage as the more sensitive Sara.

And Wayne Brankin’s fantastic return to the society in the role of Sid the plumber brought a final dose of light-hearted fun to the show.

Kudos must go to both director Neil and the production team for capturing the magical absurdity of farce - despite the mayhem going on off stage.

Tonight and tomorrow, 7-30pm. Tickets: 01282 661234.