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Cost £12 (Concessions: £10)
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Tel020 8932 4747
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"LORD ARTHUR SAVILE'S CRIME" by Oscar Wilde
(Dramatised by Ronald Selwyn Phillips)


This hilarious adaptation of Oscar Wilde's amusing comedy was premiered at Barons Court in the 90's. As soon as the reviews appeared, it sold out. We staged it again: this time all tickets sold out immediately. And the same thing happened again at the 3rd staging - even though we gave it a 12-week run! After the total sell out for the 4th production in 1999, we decided that everyone in London must have seen it, so we decided to rest it for a time. But so many people keep asking "When are you going to put on 'Lord Arthur Savile's Crime' again?", that we felt we had to listen to them.

So here it is again, in a delightfully fresh treatment of this hugely successful play.

Lord Arthur, a handsome but rather naive aristocrat, gets the shock of his young life when he takes Sybil, his beautiful fiancee, for approval by his aunt, the dragon-like Lady Windermere. His aunt insists that Lord Arthur must have his palm read by her amazing clairvoyant, Podgers - and Podgers predicts that it is Lord Arthur's destiny to become a murderer! Even worse, the murder victim will be his lovely fiancee, Sybil! But scheming Podgers suggests a possible way out.....and the blackest of all black comedies begins to unfold once again.

The play is directed by Nadine Hanwell, whose acclaimed "Nadine's Window" productions at Barons Court Theatre over many years, have helped to establish the theatre as one of the best venues in London for classical adaptations.



PERFORMANCES: TUESDAYS - SATURDAYS (7.45 p.m.) SUNDAYS (6.45 p.m.)

ADMISSION: £12 (Concessions - £10) (FINAL WEEK OF RUN: £15 with £12 Concessions)

BOX OFFICE: 020 8932 4747 (In view of the expected demand, tickets have been placed on sale immediately)

EMAIL BOOKINGS: Why not book by email? Send details of performance required and no. of tickets to:
londontheatre@gmail.com and you can pay for them, in cash, when you come to the performance.

REVIEWS (PREVIOUS PRODUCTIONS):

TIME OUT "Blasphemy though it may be to say so, this is an improvement on Wilde's original tale. A delighted audience spontaneously applauded every single scene

LONDON FRINGE "Comic timing so tight, you are immediately swept away by its sheer barminess. For once Wilde is funny"

PINK PAPER "I was nearly hysterical!"

SOUTHERN CROSS "Hilarious!"

WHAT'S ON "Wilde enthusiasts will enjoy seeing this work and for non-specialists it guarantees an entertaining evening of theatre"

SASHA SELVIE "Machine gun bitchery - a joy to behold. Wilde's savage black comedy slips down with
the elegance of a Haute Couture condom"

CURRENT PRODUCTION:

REMOTEGOAT (Thursday 29 September 2012)

LAUGH? THEY VERY NEARLY DIED!

Oscar Wilde's delightful black comedy began life as a short story, first
published in The Court and Society Review in late 1887. It is dramatised here with some modifications by Ronald Selwyn Phillips. If anything, these changes improve on the original, and certainly make the tale dramatically effective.The main character, Lord Arthur Savile, played with aplomb by Christian Deal, is introduced by Lady Windermere (the suitably bumptious Jean Christie) to Septimus Podgers (Harry Saks), a creepy chiromantic, who reads his palm and tells him that it is his destiny to be a murderer. Lord Arthur wants to marry, but decides he cannot do so until he has committed the murder.

In Phillips's version, Podgers suggests to Lord Arthur's horror that the murder victim will be his fiancee, Sybil Merton (played with gusto by the delectable Chloe Fontaine). There follow a number of vain attempts to deflect the prophesy by killing others--his elderly aunts Lady Windermere and Lady Clementina (the impressively versatile Kate Sandison who also plays Lady Windermere's maid), and the chiromantic himself. None of these attempts, aided and abetted in cloak-and-dagger style by the larger-than-life Herr Winckelkopf (Tony Parkin), goes as planned, with hilarious consequences. The equally versatile Parkin also plays a Wildean stock character, the Dean of Paddington whose ecclesiastical preoccupation with weddings, funerals and fine wines is given strong comic focus.

Ronald Phillips has skilfully adapted this story for the stage, taking care to frame his script around Oscar Wilde's brilliant witticisms, playing the self-effacing host to his star guest writer. This is a wise strategy that gives full rein to Wilde's comic genius.

It would be invidious to single out individual actors for particular praise, since all perform well enough, though overall, the women do a little better than the men, some of whom need to enunciate their lines more clearly.
Nadine Hanwell's direction is skilful and appropriate, but clumsy scene changes in blackout slow the pace down unnecessarily. Katherine Leung's and Emi Tse's rather fussy backdrop is mostly to blame here. However,these are minor criticisms of a show that kept the audience in stitches throughout--a rare achievement on the London Fringe these days, where,all too often, earnest young writers seem more concerned to explore their own political agenda than to entertain an audience.

John Phillips (REMOTE GOAT)
Pictures
Reviews
Official Review by John Phillips, read now
People involved
Jean Christie
Lady Windermere
Chloe Fontaine
Sybil Merton
Harry Saks
Septimus Podgers

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